| Amy Goodman | Truthout |
Voters in Nevada and a handful of cities across the United States appear poised to expand the use of ranked-choice voting in the aftermath of Tuesday’s midterm elections.
The forces for ranked-choice voting are people who really care about our democracy.
The election method allows voters to select multiple candidates in descending order of preference. It is used in many other countries, and supporters say it can reduce polarization and give more voice to independent voters. “The forces for ranked-choice voting are people who really care about our democracy,” says George Cheung, director of More Equitable Democracy, who says ranked-choice voting “allows for truer representation of who we are as a community.”
We look now at how voters chose to expand the use of the election method known as ranked-choice voting during Tuesday’s midterm elections. Ranked-choice voting was on the ballot in the entire state of Nevada and many cities. It also shaped the outcome of races where it’s already in place. Supporters say it could reduce polarization in politics, give more voice to independent voters, among other things.
In Nevada, the “yes” vote leads for a ballot measure that would change the state’s elections to a system of a nonpartisan primary that allows voters to choose candidates from any party. After the primary, ranked-choice general elections would let voters rank their top five candidates who advanced.
Meanwhile, in Maine’s largest city of Portland, and in Evanston, Illinois, voters backed measures to use ranked-choice voting in city elections.
In Alaska, the state’s ranked-choice voting system will decide which candidate will represent the state in Congress, after the Senate race remained undecided when none of the candidates received half the vote. Voters in Alaska approved the new system in 2020. The 2022 August special election was the first time they were used in the state. In that election, Democrat Mary Peltola beat former governor and 2008 Republican vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin to fill an open U.S. congressional seat. Peltola campaigned on reproductive rights and made history as the first Alaska Native in Congress.