Election Reforms can — PROTECT Democracy . . . and the Republic
Ranked-Choice Voting favors candidates with broad appeal including pro-democracy supporters, as a result, Politicians responsible for Voter Suppression could face significant challenges
Ranked-Choice Voting experiencing growth
The use of Ranked-Choice Voting (RCV) is continuing to grow with expansion in new locations in 2022 and more cities and states introducing RCV legislation in 2023.
Ranked-Choice Voting eliminates the tremendous time and cost of conducting runoff elections that can be a financial barrier for many candidates and a waste of tax-payer dollars.
RCV can assist in Mending Divisions from bitter partisan politics
According to an article published by PEW Charitable Trusts, “Advocates also say it (RCV) leads to less vitriolic and polarizing campaigning, since candidates need broad appeal to advance in the tabulation rounds. With less bitter Partisanship, voters might elect politicians who could work to end paralyzing gridlock.”
RCV can assist in Protecting the Future of Democracy
In order to win an election that uses RCV, a candidate must obtain a majority of all ranked votes cast. In contrast, current elections use the Plurality approach where the candidate with the largest number of votes wins, that many times results in the victor having far less than 50% of the votes cast. The RCV tabulation process that may take multiple rounds favors candidates with Broad Appeal to Voters.
Politicians responsible for anti-democratic Voter Suppression laws may face significant challenges from moderate candidates with Broad Appeal who choose to Protect Voter Rights and Democracy.
A large percentage of Voters are concerned about Voter Suppression and other threats to Democracy that are rising in the country.
There are many Voters who support Ranked-Choice Voting after realizing that RCV can assist in Protecting Democracy’s Future.
RCV Alaska elections in 2022 favored moderate candidates with broad appeal
In the 2022 RCV contest for a US House seat in Alaska, Sarah Palin, a former governor endorsed by Trump and a more extreme candidate, held the most votes after the 2nd round RCV tabulations. However, Palin, who ran a negative campaign, did not receive a majority of the ranked votes and after the final tabulation round, Mary Peltola, a moderate Democrat obtained 54.9% of the votes to win the election.
Separately, in the 2022 Alaska Senate race that had three RCV tabulation rounds, moderate Republican Lisa Murkowski defeated maga-Republican Kelly Tshibaka.
The victories by Peltola and Murkowski over two more extreme opponents provided victories for moderate candidates with broad voter appeal.
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IN THE NEWS
Published by The Hill
H1.) “Ranked choice voting may be the ultimate cure for extremist politics”
by Jim Jones, Opinion Contributor –
February 6, 2023
“Idaho has become a one-party red state where a minority of the Republican Party has been able to control the political agenda. As a result, the Idaho Legislature has gotten more extreme with every primary election.”
“The extremist legislators have exhibited no interest in working to solve real problems facing the state.”
“Efforts to combat creeping extremism have been further complicated by an influx of dark money into the state to support the most extreme candidates. . .”
“. . . the root cause of the problem (is) — the method of selecting the people who orchestrate the divisiveness and chaos.”
(With Ranked-Choice Voting) “The 2022 general election in Alaska witnessed a dramatic move to the center by most of the candidates and a substantial reduction in divisive partisan posturing.”
Published by NBC News
H2.) “Following a big year, more states push ranked-choice voting“
Lawmakers in 14 states have already introduced 27 bills proposing ranked-choice voting models, according to an NBC News review.
By Adam Edelman
Jan. 16, 2023
“The past year saw not only an expansion in the use of ranked-choice systems but also increased interest in instituting it more widely. And in 2023, legislatures in at least 14 states will consider bills that would move them to this increasingly popular model.”
“Advocates of ranked-choice voting have long said the setup benefits moderate candidates who don’t play to either party’s fringe and work instead to appeal to the broadest number of people.”
“In many states, some of the purported strengths of the system promised by supporters — such as a rejection of polarizing candidates — came to fruition. In Alaska, for example, where ranked-choice voting was used for the first time in the state’s Senate and congressional races, voters chose incumbent Sen. Lisa Murkowski and Mary Peltola for those offices over more extreme candidates.”
Published by Rank The Vote
H3.) How Ranked Choice Voting can curtail gerrymandering
By Kyle Herman
December 9, 2021
” Even where reforms were passed to require fair, nonpartisan districts—like with a constitutional referendum approved with 75% of the vote in my home state Ohio—politicians have ignored the will of voters . . .”
“. . . ranked choice voting can make elections more competitive by empowering more candidates from across the spectrum to run . . . “
” RCV’s instant runoff process makes it more likely that the winner will accurately represent a majority of voters because they need more than 50% of votes—unlike our current plurality-wins system, in which a candidate can win with a fraction of the vote.”
“With more than two candidates or parties able to compete in each race, trying to gerrymander districts in the future would be harder than the simple way they’re drawn now based on the two-party split.”
Published by The Associated Press
H4.) “EXPLAINER: How ranked-choice voting works in Alaska“
By MIKE CATALINI
November 9, 2022
“Instead of picking a single candidate for office, voters are given the choice to rank who they want to fill a particular seat.”
“Voters rank their choices by preference, with votes being counted in rounds. If a candidate wins over 50% in the first round, it’s over. If not, round two starts with the candidate who got the fewest votes in the first round being eliminated. If the eliminated candidate was your vote then your next choice gets your vote in this round.”
Published by Divided We Fall from FairVote
H5.) “Ranked-Choice Voting Results in More Democratic Outcomes“
By Deb Otis – Director of Research at FairVote
“Ranked-choice voting (RCV) is the fastest-growing election reform in the country. It is currently used by over ten million voters in two states and 53 cities and counties, while another ten regions are voting this November on whether or not to make the switch.”
“RCV, by contrast, elects candidates who have the most support across the entire electorate. By ensuring votes are not wasted, voters under an RCV system can be sure that elections are won by candidates with the most support. Data shows that 73% of RCV voters ranked their winning candidate as one of their top three choices.”
“Under an RCV system, candidates must compete for second and third choices. This encourages candidates to appeal to as many voters as possible, rather than take an unproductively negative and combative stance toward their opponents.”
Published by PEW Charitable Trusts
H6.) “Don’t Vote for Just One: Ranked-Choice Voting Is Gaining Ground“
By: Matt Vasilogambros
December 2, 2022
“Ranked-choice voting has seen steady success in recent years. Nationwide, 62 jurisdictions have adopted the voting method, including Alaska and Maine in statewide races and New York City for local races.”
“Proponents of the voting method argue it leads to better representation of voters’ viewpoints and more collegial campaigning while eliminating the need for costly runoff elections. Opponents say it’s too complicated for the average voter to understand.”
“Advocates also say it leads to less vitriolic and polarizing campaigning, since candidates need broad appeal to advance in the tabulation rounds. With less bitter partisanship, voters might elect politicians who could work to end paralyzing gridlock.”
Published by FairVote
H7.) Surveys: Increased Campaign Civility (with Ranked-Choice Voting)
“Ranked-choice voting (RCV) encourages civil discourse because candidates campaign not only for first- but also second-choice support. Consequently, candidates are incentivized to appeal to a broader range of voters and to avoid negative statements about opponents to reduce the risk of alienating their supporters.”
” RCV resulted in a more positive congressional primary in Virginia, according to a survey of Virginia Republican primary voters who used RCV in 2022.”
” First-time RCV users in Santa Fe in 2018 reported more positive campaigning. 67% of poll respondents believed the tone of the mayoral election was more positive than prior mayoral elections while only 3% responded that the tone was more negative.”
” A 2021 analysis found that candidates were more likely to engage with each other in RCV cities than in plurality cities. Articles about campaigns in RCV cities had far more positive than negative words.
Published by The Washington Informer
H8.) “Ranking the Vote Equals Strengthening Our Democracy”
By Sean Dugar
February 16, 2022
“We believe ranking the vote is just a step in strengthening our democracy.
“One of the reasons we have so many societal issues is because, under our current system, leaders do not have to be responsive to the needs of the majority of the people. Ranked choice voting ensures a fair and majority election outcome to equitably represent voters and address the needs of their communities.”
Published by the Harvard Kennedy School Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation
H9.) “HKS Study Group Explores Maine’s Experiment with Ranked-Choice Voting“
Success in a small state teaches a big lesson about electoral reform, it can be done
by Daniel Harsha, Associate Director for Communications and Public Affairs, Harvard Kennedy School Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation
“Fed up with the explosion of money in politics, the ever-growing hurdles to voting, and the persistence of gerrymandered legislative districts, a movement to reform many of our democratic institutions and processes has taken root at the state and local levels across the United States over the past decade.”
” In 2016, Maine voters became the first to approve statewide ranked-choice voting. . . “
““Opponents were turning over ever rock to try to find ways to derail the effort.””
“It turned out that 87 percent of voters in that summer’s Democratic primary used the rankings . . . In fact there were only about $100,000 in additional costs”
Published by Reason
H10.) Ranked Choice Voting Won at the Polls in 2022
By Joe Lancaster
March 1, 2023
“. . . “Mary Peltola defeated former Gov. Sarah Palin in an August 2022 special election (in Alaska) to become only the third Democrat elected to the U.S. House in the state’s history.”
“Even though nearly 60 percent of voters chose a Republican first, those votes were split between Palin and Nick Begich III; when Begich was eliminated (with the RCV process) and his votes redistributed . . . Peltola received Democratic and Republican votes and prevailed with over 51 percent of the final tally.”
“After the 2022 runoff, Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger told The New York Times that he would ask the state legislature to switch to ranked choice voting.”
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