Case against Ranked Choice Voting | Letter

It appears some folks are smitten with Ranked Choice Voting. (RCV) To those, I submit the old saw: “Be Careful What You Wish For.” You may find living with RCV, as I found living with it in the Bay Area for many years, is not wonderful, not even good.

Of course, there is the irrefutable claim that RCV is cheaper. It seems simple enough too, and relax I won’t go much beyond the simple part. And that is with RCV there is no run-off voting like San Juan County where when no candidate tops 50% of the vote the two top finishers are placed in a run-off election.

In a “simple” RCV voters rank their candidate choices, and when no candidate gets over 50%, those receiving the least first place votes are tossed and their below first place choices are passed to the remaining candidates as dictated by the voter. Someone eventually gets over 50%.

All is just peachy so far and of course you don’t need the RCV when in the first round a candidate winner gets over 50% just like you don’t need a run-off in the present situation. Shortly, however, things get smelly.

In RCV candidates can game the system, seems complicated but is really not. Backroom dealing between candidates gets common, especially now with polling in most elections.

This manipulation of the vote can get you the best manipulator not the best candidate. Believe me, it happens and you dear voter will not like it.

Peter Groves,

San Juan Island