Tuesday is primary election day in Duluth, and if voters there follow this year’s pattern in other Minnesota municipal primaries, most won’t cast a ballot. Turnout was abysmal on Aug. 11 in St. Louis Park (3.6 percent in a mayoral primary), Bloomington (4.9 percent in City Council District 2) and Maplewood (16 percent in a five-way contest for council member at large).
We hope Duluthians are true to their reputations for civic engagement and troop to the polls in substantially higher numbers than their suburban counterparts did. But we also urge them to consider whether Minnesota’s port city ought to follow the lead of Minneapolis and St. Paul and eliminate its primary altogether. That’s what ranked-choice voting (RCV) does — and that’s what Duluth voters have a chance to adopt in the Nov. 3 general election.