Last spring, the Maine Legislature stalemated on a bill to fully repeal ranked-choice voting due, in large part, to the impressive, forceful response from supporters of ranked-choice voting. Unfortunately, opponents of ranked-choice voting are still active in their quest to make sure that Mainers do not have a chance to use ranked-choice voting in the 2018 election cycle.
It is important to note that the use of ranked-choice voting does not conflict with any provisions in the state Constitution.
As in all decisions people make in a democratic society, voters must know and understand what is happening in order to speak to the reasons they voted to have ranked-choice voting in Maine. Without ranked-choice voting, and with the potential for a number of candidates vying for governor, it would be possible for a candidate to win the primary with just 15 to 20 percent of the vote.
There will be a special session in the Legislature this fall to reconsider the options for the ranked-choice voting law. Ranked-choice voting is a nonpartisan, common sense reform. It was backed by Democrats, Independents and Republicans. It was a transformative issue that the people voted on.
Bette Swett-Thibeault, Lewiston