During just two hours of working at the Waterville polls Nov. 7, 100 people stood in line at my table to sign the petition for a people’s veto of the legislator’s shameful vote that effectively kills the people’s ranked-choice voting law.

Ranked-choice voting was approved by nearly 400,000 Mainers, or 52 percent of Maine voters last November. And despite that mandate, Maine legislators, who openly do not like citizen initiatives, changed or overturned four out of five ballot questions that passed, including ranked-choice voting.

All this year legislators used misinformation, withheld funding and conducted voting delays to avoid doing the job voters asked them to do; implement ranked-choice voting. Their job was to change the word “plurality” to “majority” in the state constitution but instead they asked the Maine Supreme Court to declare the law unconstitutional.

The Maine Supreme Court did not find ranked-choice voting violates the constitution. Instead, justices gave an opinion that it would be confusing to voters because two different type ballots would be used in the next election or until legislators changed the word “plurality” to the word “majority.”

Legislators know that it will be harder for them to be reelected because for years now they have been elected to office with as few as 30 or 40 percent of the vote and not by a majority. Ranked-choice voting will assure, regardless of affiliation or lack thereof, that a candidate for office, will be elected by a majority vote of 51 percent. Outsider big money can’t buy a ranked-choice voting election.

There are now 18 candidates running for governor in the next election. Ranked0-choice voting is an “instant runoff” process that winnows down the candidates without having a runoff election. With ranked-choice voting, one will be elected by a majority of the vote. There will be no more governors elected with only a 38-percent plurality of the vote.

Jim Chiddix


Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or to participate in the conversation. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.

Kennebec Journal & Morning Sentinel news

Get news and events from your towns in your inbox every Friday.
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.