RCV campaign delivers thousands more petition signatures
than required to Secretary of State’s office
AUGUSTA, ME | October 19, 2015 – An effort to give citizens a greater voice at the ballot box and to elect leaders with true majority support will soon be one step closer to reality. The Committee for Ranked Choice Voting today delivered thousands more than the necessary petition signatures to Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap’s Augusta office, en route to putting the measure on the 2016 state ballot.
Ranked Choice Voting allows voters to rank candidates in order of preference, knowing that if their first choice does not win, their vote will go to their second choice. The ultimate winner will have more than 50% of the vote, and thus a wider base of support. Because candidates will need a broader base of support, positive campaigning is more effective. Because winners will take office with a majority, governing and legislating will be less divisive.
“By signing these petitions, tens of thousands of Maine voters are saying, ‘we need a better way to elect our leaders,’” said former state Senator Dick Woodbury, who is chairing the campaign. “This may be the most important issue I’ve ever worked on. It’s certainly the most non-partisan—people from across the political spectrum are joining this effort to help reform our elections.”
Illustrating his point, Woodbury, an Independent, was joined at a state house news conference today by a multi-partisan group of supporters including:
- Polly Ward, Board member, League of Women Voters, former Business Manager for the South Portland School Department
- Peter Mills, Executive Director, Maine Turnpike Authority; Republican, former State Senator representing District 26
- Beverly Uhlenhake, Commercial Realtor, Democrat, Deputy Mayor of Brewer
Ranked choice voting would apply to all primary and general election races for the State Legislature, U.S. House of Representatives, U.S. Senate, and Governor.
The nonpartisan League of Women Voters of Maine has endorsed ranked choice voting as the most cost-effective and efficient solution to restore majority rule and to give voters more power.