Attention New York City voters — if you want to know which candidates most agree with you in the June 25th Primary, please drop by One City Rising’s New York Voters Guides.

These Voters Guides were built by One City Rising, powered by voter-candidate matchmaking software I built: Alignvote.

Step 1: Enter Your Address to find the Election Races

Entering your address will take you to the election races, where you can answer about a dozen questions. These questions are also provided directly to the candidates. Alignvote will then show you the degree of match between your views and those of the candidates, taking into account how strongly you feel about each issue.

Step 2: Answer about a dozen questions, and optionally how strongly you feel about them

Step 3: Get a Stack-Ranked List!

Alignvote will also show you any elaboration provided by the candidate, without any editing, on each issue. So it’s a chance for candidates to get their message across to voters on each issue, right when the voter is evaluating whom to vote for.


I built voter-candidate matchmakers for the 2019 and 2021 Seattle elections. They delivered over 60,000 voter-candidate rankings during these elections. I simply took the questions from “lightning round” sections of candidate forums across the city and put them online for people to answer. One candidate suggested a great feature addition — being able to have her (and all other candidates’) responses/commentary built in to the platform, so that voters can see why they chose the option they did. That was implemented within a week, in 2019, and is one of the most useful parts of the whole platform.

This past September (2023), I was contacted by the leaders of One City Rising, an independent grassroots civic group which was formed by moderate Democrats to address some of New York’s most vexing problems. They had seen what happened in Seattle’s movement toward the political center in 2023, and were particularly curious about Alignvote, the voter-candidate matchmaker tool I had created.

They wanted to deliver “dating app” style voters guides for NYC’s 5.3 million voters. They asked me if they could have an Alignvote set of quizzes for NYC. I agreed to help, and set about rewriting Alignvote to allow third-parties to input their own questions and manage their own co-branded voter-candidate matchmaker quizzes.

The result is Alignvote 3.0, which is now live at

What is Alignvote?

The premise of Alignvote is that it is increasingly hard for voters to quickly identify where they might agree or disagree with candidates — particularly local candidates.

While my own political stances are irrelevant here to what the customer wants to do with the quiz platform, I must say that as a moderate myself, I believe that politics is often about tradeoffs. Doing more of X often means doing less of Y. And controversies don’t usually get that way because one side is “evil” and the other “good,” but usually because there are compelling tradeoffs to be made with one approach or the other. And I’ve long told my own kids that we cannot claim to understand an issue unless we can articulate, in good faith, the best argument on the other side.

But journalism is failing us. And social media makes it far too easy to just opt-in to your own worldview and shut yourself out of any argument against it.

We all know that political journalism has deteriorated into siloed cheerleading. And things like party membership are no longer good proxies for voters, particularly in primaries, where a far-left Dem, say, might run against a centrist Dem, yet each carry the same party label. Further, several once-centrist endorsement organizations have drifted to the extremes. And often, identity attributes (e.g., female, BIPOC, LGBT, etc.) are so greatly elevated in messaging that they overwhelm the policy stances candidates might actually have. Worse, the existing candidate statements provided to voters generally often read like Astrology forecasts, where you can basically read anything into them that you want.

Sometimes, we just want candidates to choose from multiple-choice answers: Do you favor more investment in X? Do you favor the government doing Y? Etc.

By putting all candidates behind a curtain and having a dating-app style approach, this tool helps you more quickly identify where candidates might agree or disagree with you on issues. By providing candidates an optional “elaboration” on each question, it allows candidates to explain their stance to you, perhaps even encouraging you to think more fully about the issue.

New in this version is an address-lookup feature, which lets voters start by entering their address to find the district races that are pertinent to their district. You can see an example here:

Good luck, NY! And thanks to the team at One City Rising for some excellent feedback.

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