I’ve been living in our great state of Maine for 32 years, and I’m tired.

I’m tired of negative campaigning during election years, which gets worse every cycle. Every election cycle, we hear the same complaints about negativity, and every cycle all the candidates do more of it. Why? Because in our current system, it works.

I’m tired of candidates being judged on “whether they can win” instead of their qualifications. I’m tired of people feeling forced into voting against a candidate they don’t like, instead of for the candidate that actually represents them. And I am exhausted with complaints about “spoilers” whenever independent candidates run for office.

We deserve better. We deserve campaigns that focus on issues and policies, and less on cheap shots. We deserve to be able to vote for candidates we support, instead of voting for “anyone but that guy” who seems to stand a chance of winning. We deserve a system that works with our rich independent tradition, and that guarantees that our elected officials have majority support every time.

We deserve ranked-choice voting. Portland used it a few years ago for a 15-candidate mayoral election and it worked great. Confusion was low, turnout was high, and the campaign was far less negative than anyone expected. Wouldn’t it be great to have that kind of experience with our multi-candidate statewide elections?

We can make this better. Ranked-choice voting will come soon to a ballot near us, and I hope others will join me in supporting this momentous step forward for Maine. No one should be afraid of making elections actually reflect the will of the majority, as they are supposed to, no matter how many candidates run.

For more information, visit www.rcvmaine.com/faq.

Robert Brown

Jefferson


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