In a recent letter, Cathy Guay opposed Ballot Measure 2. She wrote, “Ranked-choice voting makes deciding a winner much more complicated.” Well, yes, it requires those voters who choose to do so to name their second choice. Could you handle that?
Ranked-choice voting makes deciding a winner depend on having a majority of voter-support. No more winning because some third candidate split the vote on the other side. Those who win will have to earn the support of a majority.
Guay continued: “Ranked-choice voting... increases the possibility of votes being discarded or not counted.” If, in our current system, you choose to vote for a sure-loser third candidate, your vote is effectively discarded. In fact, all votes except those for the winner are effectively discarded – they may be counted, but they don’t matter – they might as well not have been cast.
Again – to tell the truth – ranked-choice voting gives voters the opportunity to express their true first-preference, as well as their second choice. This is good for a clearer expression of voters' wishes, for improving citizenship and increasing electoral participation, and for the development of third parties.
But most importantly – again – it means that the winner will have majority support. That’s democracy.
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