Friday :: Dec 7, 2007

A great idea

by Turkana

Katrina vanden Heuvel explains:

Another important step towards advancing our democracy is implementing instant runoff voting (IRV), and it's making headway these days at the state and local levels, and showing promise for federal elections too. With IRV, voters can vote their conscience and not worry that a vote is being "wasted" on someone who "can't win." IRV promotes greater debate and more alternatives, and also results in the winning candidate having the support of the majority of voters. Here's how it works: if four candidates were on a ballot, you would rank them one to four. When the votes are tabulated, if one of the candidates is the first choice for 50 percent of the voters, then he or she wins. If not, then the last-place candidate is eliminated, and if you voted for that candidate, your vote in the next round of tabulations is added to the vote totals of the candidate you ranked as your second choice. The process continues until one candidate receives over 50 percent of the vote.

In Florida, in the year 2000, since neither Al Gore nor George W. Bush gets 50% of the state's popular vote, a second tabulation is made. Ralph Nader, Pat Buchanan, and others are eliminated, count by count, until Gore or Bush does reach the 50% margin. Eliminating Buchanan actually puts Gore into the lead, although he's still short of 50%. When Nader is eliminated, Gore has a margin of victory not even Katherine Harris can steal.

If the will of the voters matters, this is an idea we need to enact.

Turkana :: 2:59 PM :: Comments (15) :: Digg It!