By Hannah Clapsadle
Published June 11th 2008 in Times-Standard - Eureka, CA
Humboldt County would be wise to adopt instant runoff voting. If we had this voting mechanism in place, we wouldn't be facing the runoff in the District 2 supervisor race.
Municipalities that currently use IRV include Burlington, Vt., Cambridge, Mass., Cary, N.C., and San Francisco among others. Los Angeles is considering putting a measure on their November ballot that would put it in place. IRV is being championed by the Chamber of Commerce in LA. It's not a right-left issue, it just makes the democratic process that more democratic, cooperative and less costly.
Instant runoff voting is a voting system used for single-winner elections in which voters rank candidates in order of preference using one ballot. No further voting rounds are required. If no candidate receives a majority of first choices, the candidate with the fewest number of votes is eliminated, and the votes cast for that candidate are redistributed to the remaining candidates according to the voters' indicated preference.
Imagine, right now we would be congratulating one of the candidates instead of waiting until November!