To the editor:

When you analyze the end result of ranked-choice voting you can understand that it is primarily a negative vote against a particular candidate.

For example, a voter is strongly against Candidate Z, but gung-ho only for off-the-wall Candidate D and neutral to all the rest. Ranked-choice voting allows his/her first vote to go to D (a sure loser, but it makes the voter feel good,) and then Candidates A, B, C and E in any order, but not for Z. In this voter’s mind, Z is in fact running against the sum total of all the other candidates.

What ensues will be substantial negative campaigning aimed at the opposition’s prime candidate with little information showing positive reasons why a particular candidate should win. Distortion of the truth and even outright lies are okay as long as the candidate’s supporters are confident that the media, (or the duped public) will not check them out.

Furthermore, splinter groups will gain more power by demanding that their second choice comes with perks to them. Historically, these groups have usually faded away because their position is not very popular. But with ranked-choice voting, government could devolve into one run by multiple coalitions.

One final thought: Once ranked-choice voting is voted in, it will never be repealed. The winners won’t allow a system to change when it got them elected.

Personally, I want to know what a candidate’s stand is on important issues and thereby vote for a candidate. I am firmly against ranked-choice voting.

Lyle Dockendorf


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