FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Will Mantell, [email protected], 914-806-0081
December 9, 2021 -- The U.S. House of Representatives voted today to fund cities and states as they first implement ranked choice voting (RCV), by passing an amendment to the Protecting Our Democracy Act that then passed the House. This is the first legislation specifically allocating money to expand RCV elections passed by either chamber of the U.S. Congress.
“Today’s vote marks an important milestone for ranked choice voting, which has already been embraced in cities and states across our Union,” said Rob Richie, President and CEO of FairVote, a nonprofit organization that advocates for better elections. “From Maine to Alaska, ranked choice voting is the fastest-growing voting reform with bipartisan support in the country. It is popular for a simple reason: no matter your zip code, political leanings, or background, it gives you greater choice and more voice on Election Day.”
The U.S. House passed the Voter Choice Act, sponsored by Rep. Dean Phillips (MN) and co-sponsored by Rep. Jamie Raskin (MD), as an amendment. The Voter Choice Act would provide up to $40 million in matching grants for cities, counties, and states adopting RCV. The Voter Choice Act has also been introduced in the Senate, where it is sponsored by Sen. Michael Bennet (CO) and Sen. Angus King (ME). Notably, RCV is already used statewide in Maine and in cities in Maryland, Minnesota and Colorado.
Ranked choice voting is growing rapidly in cities and states across the country, now reaching 55 jurisdictions with 10 million voters. Here are several of RCV’s biggest wins in 2021:
- RCV was used in this year’s biggest elections -- New York City’s Democratic primary and Virginia’s Republican convention. New York City elected its most diverse government ever, including its second Black mayor and its first majority-female City Council. Virginia’s first-ever RCV Republican convention nominated Gov.-elect Glenn Youngkin.
- RCV was used in a record 32 cities on Election Day, across seven states. 22 cities successfully used RCV for the first time on Election Day, including 20 as part of a statewide pilot program in Utah. Minneapolis and Salt Lake City both elected their first-ever majority-minority City Councils using RCV.
- Voters approved 5 ballot measures to adopt RCV elections -- Broomfield, CO; Westbrook, ME; Ann Arbor, MI; Austin, TX; and Burlington, VT. Voters have now approved 13 straight city ballot measures to adopt RCV by an average margin of nearly two-to-one.
FairVote is a nonpartisan organization seeking better elections for all. We research and advance voting reforms that make democracy more functional and representative for every American.