Letter in Highland Villager: Extend ranked-choice voting
Highland Villager: October 24, 2016
The political pundits are at it again, telling voters to just say “no” to third -party candidates. Protest votes are futile, the pundits say. They can even tip an election toward the greater evil, they warn. Well, maybe the pundits are right, and voter preferences need to take back seat to eh entrenched parties. But there’s another way.
Ranked-choice voting (RCV lets people vote their consciences without the worry that they might be contributing to a greater-evil outcome. RCV is already used in municipal elections in Minneapolis and St. Paul. It allows voters to rank candidate in order of preference and, if necessary, an instant runoff is conduced by eliminating the candidate with the fewest first-choice votes and redistributing those ballots to those voters’ second choices. This ensures that a winner emerges with a majority and not just a plurality of votes cast.
It’s time to bring the advantages of RCV to statewide and national elections. Voters should feel confident that office holders reflect the will of the people rather than someone whom voters merely settled for. RCV ensures that outcome.