Instant Runoff Voting Gains Momentum
Bob Richie, Executive Director of FairVote, writes:
This month has been a remarkable one for IRV advocates. On a national level, Great Britain took a major step toward a May 2011 national referendum on adopting IRV for its parliamentary elections — one likely to be the country’s first national referendum of any sort in decades. Australia’s national elections underscored how with IRV voters can fearlessly back third parties without forfeiting their chance to indicate a preference between the major parties — a value made all the more relevant by controversies over efforts by partisan operatives in the United States to split opposition votes through “faux” third party candidacies.
American support for IRV continues to grow. Notable new voices for IRV this month included MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow, constitutional law professor Richard Pildes and Parade Magazine columnist Marilyn dos Savant. This November IRV will be on the ballot in elections in Maine’s biggest city (Portland) and Tennessee’s biggest county (Shelby). North Carolina will hold the first statewide general elections with IRV in American history, and its state board seems to be rising to the challenge well. Three California cities are using IRV for the first time, including Oakland (CA) in a hotly contested mayor’s race. A federal change dismissed a frivolous, but well-financed challenge to IRV as practiced in San Francisco. […] Continue reading …