Tired of voting for “the lesser of two evils”?

Is an election in which most people’s preferred candidate loses a good thing?

The number of candidates vying for the upcoming presidential election means that most voters will likely end up disappointed because their preferred candidate is eliminated.

Ranked-choice voting could help fix that problem. On their ballots, voters rank the candidates in the order of their preference. The candidate with the fewest votes is eliminated, and the second-choice candidate on those ballots now receives that vote. The elimination continues until one candidate has a majority.

San Francisco has used rank-choice voting in local elections since 2004 and the system decided a 2018 congressional election in Maine. Towns that use it tend to have better voter turnout than before. Harvard law professor Lawrence Lessig’s group, Equal Citizens, is proposing the use of ranked-choice voting in presidential primaries in 2020.

If you are interested in expanding your voting options, contact your state representatives and urge them to pass ranked-choice voting legislation.

Meanwhile, keep looking for how upcoming presidential candidates address the obscenely bloated military budget that could be better used to meet real human needs and save our planet. According to a 2017 Brown University study, federal spending on domestic programs in health care, education, clean energy and infrastructure creates more jobs, dollar for dollar, than military spending.

Harold A. Penner


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