Screenshot of Maine Secretary of State ranked-choice voting informational video
AUGUSTA – An official video produced by the Maine Secretary of State’s office clearly demonstrates what opponents of ranked-choice voting have been saying for months, that the system doesn’t produce a winner with a majority vote, but shrinks the number of ballots counted to create the false impression of a majority to declare the winner.
In the video, which features the voice of Maine Secretary of State Matt Dunlap speaking as a cartoon of himself, a four candidate election under RCV is shown. There are thirty total votes cast in the election.
At the end of the final round of counting, the winning candidate only has 14 votes but is declared the majority winner of an election where 30 votes were cast. As most people who understand math can easily point out, 14 votes is not more than half of 30.
View the Maine Secretary of State’s ranked choice voting video below:
Representative Heather Sirocki, an opponent of RCV, said the video, “clearly shows that RCV does not guarantee a true majority.”
Rep. Sirocki also took aim at supporters of RCV who promised the system did not violate the Maine Constitution, and claimed it would produce election winners with majority support, “The voters have not been told the truth. We were told RCV was Constitutional; it is not. We were told it guaranteed a Majority; it does not. Completely overwhelmed and with no money spent in opposition, Mainers were tricked by slick advertising and quick talkers.”
MHPC also pointed out that 14 is not a real majority of 30 total votes, and that the video showed a second place candidate overtaking the first place candidate but still not achieving a majority of the votes before predicting that Maine’s elections “will be decided in the courts, not at the ballot box.”
Rep. Sirocki pointed out that the original RCV measure was supported largely with money from outside Maine, saying, “We are told that Mainers support this measure; but it was funded with $2.5 million from out-of-state deep pockets.”