Ranked-choice voting supporters are embarking on a referendum do-over, seeking enough signatures for a vote to nullify a legislative delay and implement the system for the June primary elections. If their efforts are successful, the state would move forward with a dual-election system — ranked-choice voting for primaries and federal races but not for gubernatorial elections or legislative races — to avoid a conflict with the Maine Constitution. The Committee for Ranked Choice Voting said it’s already halfway to a goal of collecting 61,123 signatures from registered voters by Feb. 5 for a “People’s Veto” referendum. If enough votes are certified, then the legislative delay would be stayed.
“Maine voters are determined to have ranked-choice voting in place, beginning with the June 2018 primaries,” said Kyle Bailey, campaign manager.
The ranked-choice system is designed to let voters rank their ballot choices from first to last in a system that supporters say ensures majority support for the winning candidate while eliminating the impact of spoilers and extremists who lack centrist appeal.