Some Politicians Approve Ranked Choice Voting

Senator Reinert and Representative Simonson

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Ranked Choice Voting has been a controversial topic and it’s only heating up as voters will be faced with a question surrounding the method on next week’s general election ballot.

Wednesday, two local politicians shed some light on why they believe Ranked Choice Voting is a great way to promote democracy and discourage negative political attacks.

Senator Roger Reinert and Representative Erik Simonson provided their perspectives on Ranked Choice Voting less than a week before voters head to the polls.

With just 17-percent voter turnout for September’s primary election in Duluth some politicians have been promoting that the city eliminate its Primary and adopt Ranked Choice Voting, allowing voters to pick more than just one candidate at a General Election.

Simonson stressed the method would give voters more choices as to who they want to see in office and it would force candidates to take the time to connect with voters individually.

“I think Ranked Choice Voting encourages civility and I think if we could accomplish that you would see more people stepping and running for office because it wouldn’t be quite so ugly,” said Representative Erik Simonson.

Here’s how it works: instead of two candidates selected in the primary potentially attacking one another and vying for votes, they would be investing their time in getting to know their voters on a more personal level.

Reinert said Ranked Choice Voting is not a new concept, nor is it confusing.

“People in life are used to ranking things when they make most decisions and people in Duluth are familiar with some aspects of Ranked Choice Voting already because of our pick two nature of the at–large election,” said Senator Roger Reinert.

Tax payers could potentially even save money, as they wouldn’t have to pay for two elections. 

Early October Mayor Ness and Councilors Filipovich, Gardner, Julsrud, Russ and Sipress expressed their concerns against the Ranked Choice System.

The councilors said it is not only complicated, but leads to votes not counting towards the final decision in elections. 

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