Ranked-choice voting makes sense for Maine elections that host three or more candidates.
It is a system that gives Maine voters the opportunity to express opinions on a full slate of candidates and it is easy to understand.
If three candidates run for a given office, voters rank them first choice, second choice and third choice, in order of preference.
It is like going food shopping, a similar everyday experience where people rank their choices. If your favorite cereal isn’t on the shelf, you opt for the second option. It is that simple.
Mainers across the political spectrum should support-ranked choice voting because it will put a significant dent in negative advertising. When candidates are encouraged to compete for both first- and second-choice rankings in order to build a broad base of support, they can’t afford to run a negative campaign. They have to stick to the issues, otherwise they run the risk of alienating voters who might see them as a second choice.
During the past year, the movement for ranked-choice voting has demonstrated broad, statewide support because Maine voters demand more more choice, more power and more positive elections. The public is tired of horse-race politics and turning televisions on in October of an election year, only to see a constant barrage of negative ads.
More information is available on the Internet about how ranked-choice voting works and how people can get involved.
Kent Ackley, Monmouth