To the Editor:
Negative campaign advertising season is officially underway. We’ve seen negative ads on local television already, not to even mention Facebook ads, Google ads, emails, and mailers. There are several established candidates all around, but instead of running on their records, some candidates are increasingly choosing to tear down their opponents. Why? Because under our plurality voting system, winner-takes-all, there is no incentive for candidates to campaign in a positive way.
If we used Ranked Choice Voting (RCV) for our partisan primaries, same party candidates would want to earn the respect and possibly even the second-place votes of their primary opponents. To do this, they would have to make the case for what they have in common and how they differentiate based on issues — not personal attacks. Instead, we’re subjected to horrible, disparaging ads while we’re just trying to watch the news. We’re in for a tiresome campaign season without RCV.
Maine successfully used RCV for their June party primaries. It’s time Minnesota makes some history of our own by implementing RCV for our statewide elections.