Friday, June 08, 2018

The Maine Systm

It looks like Maine is going to try out a new system for statewide elections.  It works like this:
Maine will be the first place to use the system, called ranked-choice voting, in statewide races this June (it’s already used in some local elections). The system kicks in for contests that have three or more candidates. Here’s how it works:
Voters rank the candidates in their party’s primary in order of preference.
If no candidate gets an outright majority, the candidate who got the fewest first-place votes is eliminated.
The second-place votes of those who supported the eliminated candidate then get distributed to the remaining candidates.
The process continues until one candidate gets more than 50 percent of the first-place votes and is declared the winner.
Interesting.  Louisiana (and several other states) use what is called a "jungle" primary, where all candidates from whatever party compete in one primary.  The top two vote-getters move to the primary, regardless of party affiliation.  Our system lads to some weird results, but after several decades of using that system, we're used to it.

The ranked-choice system is innovative and certainly bears watching.


Steve Sky said...

I forget which European country it is, but "None of the above" is an option on the ballet. If "None of the above" wins first place, the primary has to be redone with totally new candidates. Usually, "None of the above" is 2nd in the rankings. You'd think the parties would take that as an indication about their candidate.

I'd like to see that here. We might be able to get new politicians under it. Although ranking might work as well.

Dwan Seicheine said...

it's a good system. It's been debated for the last fifty years or so. I hope every state does it.

Theother Ryan said...

Maybe I need to re read this tomorrow but I’m confused.

I like the top 2/ jungle primary. It makes for more competition in areas dominated by one party which is a good thing.

Javahead said...

We’ve got jungle primary here in California, and it often seems to depress turnout in the general election - a lot of people won’t vote if there are no candidates from their own party in the statewide and local races. And in the 2016 election it likely depressed Republican turnout by a significant amount - tens or hundreds of thousands? - since the state was guaranteed to go for Clinton. Not that the Republicans could have taken the state, but the vote likely wouldn’t have been so one sided.