Apparently The Columbian isn’t the only paper being watched over at Columbian Watch. I was intrigued by a link to The Oregonian about a HB 1447 which would allow Vancouver, Spokane and Tacoma to experiment with Instant Runoff Voting (IRV). [“Lawmaker promotes new form of voting“]
In an IRV system, voters rank the candidates. If no candidate receives a majority of votes, the bottom candidate is eliminated, and those who voted for him have their second choice counted. This continues until somebody receives a true majority.
Longtime readers may be familiar with my infatuation with IRV, which I see as an opportunity for voters to vote for the candidate they like best, rather than for the lesser evil they think has the best chance of winning. And given a choice between our new, stupid-ass “top two” primary, and eliminating the primary entirely and going to an IRV general election… I much prefer the latter.
HB 1447 would simply authorize local governments to use IRV for local elections. Spokane and Tacoma would have to amend their city charters. Vancouver has already done so.
The bill’s sponsor, Rep. Jim Moeller (D-Vancouver) also makes the following timely observation:
Moeller said he thinks the method would have made the winner in the recent gubernatorial election “crystal clear.”
While an undisputed election might have been bad for us bloggers, I’m pretty sure it would have been good for the rest of Washington’s citizens.
Go to IRVWA.org for more information on efforts to implement IRVs in Washington.