Dump primaries for ranked voting — George Perkins

Dump primaries for ranked voting — George Perkins


Why must the state and Madison conduct costly primary elections Feb. 18 to winnow nonpartisan races down from three to two candidates so the winner can take all on April 7?

It all seems so ridiculous when a mathematically simple alternative exists.

Just rank your favorite candidate: first, second and third. The third-place finisher's votes get re-assigned until a clear majority winner is achieved. This is called “ranked choice” or “instant runoff” voting.

And it needn’t be restricted to nonpartisan races. Ranked choice also could be used in any general election where many parties or independent candidates are up for a vote.

How much would taxpayers save if, instead of separate primary and general elections, we used the ranked choice method? Let’s see some reporting on the costs and benefits of this system and the legislative steps necessary to make it happen.

George Perkins, Madison


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