I’m increasingly frustrated with our electoral system. Whether it’s voter suppression, divisive, negative campaigns, or the disinterest of candidates to stick to promises, elections have become exercises in money buying power.
My decades of volunteering have shown me we need an upgrade. On issues that the vast majority of Americans agree on, like the need to improve our infrastructure or take care of our veterans, we are increasingly stuck. This is because officials, in thrall to their donors, make laws to their benefit — not ours. Money has hijacked democracy.
Lately, though, I’ve found reason for optimism.
Ranked-choice voting (RCV) is a system of voting that makes voters’ voices more powerful, makes campaigns more friendly and issue-based, and reduces money’s toxic influence. On top of this, it’s completely nonpartisan reform that has support across the whole political spectrum.
Ranked-choice voting is an ethical, accessible, cost-saving solution that gives you the option to rank candidates in the order you prefer: first, second, third and so forth. If your first choice can’t win, your vote counts for your second choice. This actually increases the number of voters that support the winner.
This means voters can vote their heart, all candidates have a fair shot, and no more “choosing the lesser evil.”
San Juan County can be a leader in reforming our elections. Our Charter Amendment Committee can pass RCV on a county level this November and I strongly hope they do. Check out FairVoteWA.org for more information about RCV!
Trina Doerfler, N.D., D.C.