Implementing the ranked ballot

Elections matter. Let's make sure everyone has a voice.

 
 
 

I strongly believe that every voter has the right to express their personal political beliefs. Voters should be comfortable entering a voting booth and expressing their actual preferences, without needing to care what other voters are doing.

Our current voting system, first-past-the-post, does not allow this. Instead, we see strategic voting, and candidates winning without majority support.

Here in Canada, strategic voting manifests itself in two ways. The typical conservative Canadian voter has no choice but to vote for the one viable right-wing candidate, despite often disagreeing with large portions of the platform.

The typical progressive Canadian voter has problems too: with two or three options espousing various aspects of a progressive platform, it can be difficult to choose a candidate. Voters can't express their own values: they have to consider what all the other voters plan to do.

 

 

THE RANKED BALLOT

The ranked ballot is a minor change to the current system. In our current system, voters can only select one candidate per office. In the new system, voters will rank candidates in order of their preference — and if no candidate has majority support, the lowest-polling candidate is eliminated, and votes for that candidate are assigned to each voter's second choice. For more detail, you can read the Wikipedia page on the topic.

This is one of many options for an alternative vote, but it's the best option for a non-partisan election.

What I'll Do

On Council, I will advocate for the ranked ballot system. Without adding much complexity — all you need to do is rank candidates in order of preference — we can ensure everyone's ballot reflects their personal choice.

Voters will no longer feel forced to vote for a candidate that doesn't represent them.

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The Ranked Ballot: so we can express our actual values at the ballot box.

Image credit: Paul C. Bahry.
Used with permission.