Idaho Citizens for

Good Government

Ranked Choice Voting

Ranked Choice Voting is a clever scheme to remove the will of the individual people from the ballot count.  It works by “throwing out” votes for candidates that didn’t get a majority of the votes cast and “swapping” the looser votes with voter’s 2nd or lower choices until a majority is reached.

An example of how the majority vote could be eliminated by this process follows:

Note how 1615 votes were eliminated to get to the ultimate winner. 

This method gives you the “least disliked” candidate instead of the “most liked” one and thus favors moderates generally.

This is similar to how the voir dire system in our courts creates juries that are more moderate as well, eliminating the outliers that either side might not want.  This creates medeocre jurors so courts don’t have to deal with informed jurors that attempt to judge both the law and the facts, as is historically within their power but usually denied by judges (even if it is in the Juror’s oath of office!).

Thus the Ranked Choice Voting method will create medeocre politicians just like voir dire creates medeocre juries.

Is this what we want?

How can a write-in fare in such a method? – well there is no way for someone not on the ballot to possibly win with this kind of method.

Note that we already have many counties that will not count a write-in vote if it is not on a pre-approved list of names.  We are loosing the ability of the informed individual to thward the uninformed opinions of the majority.

Again, the trend is away from the expression of the individual and toward the “consesus” of the crowd.

Note that the founding fathers were a minority, the torres were the majority, but their activities and wisdom caused and allowed us to win the revolution and get free of King Georges overbearing laws – the majority not-with-standing.

For more information see this article on the pitfalls and historical failings of RCV (Ranked Choice Voting).