Ranked Choice Voting
Sick of the stranglehold the Republican and Democratic Parties have on our government? Ever wish you could express yourself by voting for an independent without throwing away your vote? Tired of second-guessing other voters (based on what the pundits are telling you) and voting for a primary candidate because you think they have the better chance of prevailing over a candidate you think is really odious? (Confession: That's why I supported Hillary Clinton over Bernie Sanders in 2016. I now think I was wrong.)
If that all sounds familiar you should be interested in hearing more about Ranked Choice Voting. Tomorrow afternoon, Thursday, January 9th at 3:30P a presentation of Ranked Choice Voting will be made to members of the Spokane City Council. From Breean Beggs: "Yes, the public is welcome, 3:30pm in the Council Briefing Center, which is in the basement of City Hall. People should check in with security in the first floor lobby and then take the elevator down to the basement."
Ranked Choice Voting was recently adopted by popular referendum in the State of Maine. The idea has been around for a while. Cambridge, Massachusetts, for example, has used Ranked Choice Voting for the City Council and School Board elections since 1940.
Click and watch an excellent series of very short, animated youtube videos on the concept of Ranked-Choice Voting v. "First Past the Post" voting (our current method). They're fun, thoughtful, and explanatory. Produced by CGP Grey, they're entitled "Politics in the Animal Kingdom."
Ideas like Ranked Choice Voting (RCV) are tossed around for years before, all of a sudden, understanding of its value spreads widely enough to drive its adoption. With hyper-polarization of our two party system producing a logjam in our governance, now might be the time to take a serious look at what Ranked Choice Voting offers.
In the State of Washington RCV is a pertinent topic. There are two bills in the current WA State legislature session (2019-20), "Local Options for Ranked-Choice Voting" HB 1722 & SB 5708. Each has bipartisan support. If these bills became law the door would open to consider Ranked-Choice Voting in Washington State both at the state level and locally.
Have a look at "Politics in the Animal Kingdom." For more background visit FairVoteWA.org. Check out the bills. Come to the meeting tomorrow. I've been assured the meeting room is plenty large, and it might be a chance to actually meet your City Council member.
Nothing good happens unless someone is doing the groundwork and planning ahead. Learning about these efforts in their early phase is important work.
Keep to the high ground, Jerry
P.S. Currently most voting in Washington State is governed by state law that mandates the top two primary with a runoff general election, the system with which we are all familiar. Top two has been in place since it was ruled constitutional by the U.S. Supreme Court in 2008--four years after 60% of the voters voted for a top two primary in 2004. Both the Republican and Democratic Parties sued to block it. You can read the timeline of Washington States voting changes here. We tend to forget that the manner in which we choose our representatives is subject to change--by us, the voters.