Why Should Voters Be Able To Rank Candidates?
The cornerstone of democracy is representation. Elections exist so that people can make their voices heard through elected officials. Unfortunately, the voting mechanisms employed throughout most of the country do not truly represent people’s wishes because they ignore a fundamental truth: People have complex preferences.
People have complex preferences.
People don’t just have ONE favorite restaurant and hate the rest or believe ONE baseball player is the best and all the others are equal. In real life, people’s priorities are ordered. That’s why the MLB uses a ranking method to determine its Most Valuable Player. It’s the reason why groups decide where to eat based on broad acceptance, not necessarily through a majority rules vote. That same principle applies when people go to vote: The vast majority have relative rankings of candidates in mind when they fill out their ballot–not just a favorite but a second best, third best, and so on. As long as elections only allow people to vote for a single person there will always be meaningful preferences left unheard.
If given the choice to rank candidates, every voter would be empowered to express their true thoughts and feelings about office-seekers and every candidate would be forced to compete for a higher slot on people’s ballot. People who feel their vote is taken for granted could support people whose views better match theirs without harming other closely aligned candidates. Politicians will now have a direct measurement of how their policies are sitting with all of us, as we will have the choice to give them a ranking as a more-precise sign of our approval for their work. People who feel totally unrepresented would have the power to elevate previously invisible candidates. Most importantly, the eventual representative would owe their election to broad support rather than narrow assent.
We need electoral reform to fight partisanship, to give voters more voice, and to develop better candidates. We need better democracy. Voters Choose needs you to help us get there!
How Does The Voters Choose System Work?
Under our voting system, every voter would have the ability to rank their favorite candidates from first to last…
Under our voting system, every voter would have the ability to rank their favorite candidates from first to last place, or simply rank as many as they wish. Each vote would be recorded and tallied in separate columns for each candidate. A first place vote would naturally be worth the most, and each following rank would only be worth half as much. That makes preferences matter enough to be significant, but not be worth so much that there is no difference between first and second.
We believe this method is the most sound way of allowing people to express preferences, making sure that those preferences are accounted for in every ballot, and maintaining a workable system that is not prone to excessive tactical voting.
We understand that the specifics of any voting system are often complicated or seemingly arbitrary. We hope that the information we provide is transparent enough to understand its structure and purpose, but we also welcome feedback, and we encourage you to contact us.
We hope that you’ll join us in letting Voters Choose!