Ranked Choice Voting 2020 Ballot Measures

The following two states and five cities have ballot measures to enact ranked choice voting on the ballot in November 2020. Earlier in the year, Maine's largest city of Portland approved a ballot measure with 81% of the vote to extend us of RCV for all city election. Collectively, they represent the most jurisdictions voting on RCV in one year in American history.

Alaska

Alaskans for Better Elections collected enough signatures to put Ballot Measure 2 to a vote this November. If passed, this ballot measure will implement several changes, including: 1) "top four" blanket primaries for state and congressional offices, where all candidates would appear on the same primary ballot and the top-four vote getters would advance to the general election, regardless of party affiliation; 2) ranked choice voting in the choice among four candidates on the November ballot, with write-in candidates permitted; 3) ranked choice voting in the presidential election among all candidates who have qualified for the ballot and any write-in candidates

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Albany, California

The city council of Albany, California voted unanimously on June 15 in favor of a ballot initiative for voters to approve the adoption of the proportional form of ranked choice voting for city elections. The ranked choice voting citywide ballot measure will be decided in November 2020. Albany would be the fifth city in California with ranked choice voting and the fourth city in the country in its proportional, "single transferable vote" form. Voter Choice Albany heads the campaign, and backers include the local East Bay Times in this thoughtful editorial.

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Bloomington, Minnesota

The city council of Bloomington, Minnesota voted 6-1 to hold a referendum this November on adopting RCV in elections for mayor and council. If passed, Bloomington would join three Minnesota cities that already use RCV. For more on the campaign, visit Ranked Choice Voting Bloomington.

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Boulder, Colorado

On August 11, the Boulder, Colorado city council approved 7-2 of a ballot measure to allow voters to elect their mayor directly with ranked choice voting, which would replace the current system where the city council selects the mayor. On September 1, the council held a final vote that put the measure before voters. The Boulder campaign to elect the mayor through RCV is led by Our Mayor, Our Choice.

Eureka, California

The city council of Eureka, California voted unanimously (5-0) to place a measure on the November ballot to adopt ranked choice voting for electing the mayor and city council. This would replace the current plurality voting system and make Eureka the 5th city in California with ranked choice voting. Here is a link to the Facebook page for Yes on C - Ranked Choice Voting for Eureka.

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Massachusetts

After a multi-year educational campaign led by Voter Choice Massachusetts, an initiative will appear on the ballot as Question 2 that, if passed, would implement ranked choice voting for Massachusetts’ U.S. Senate and U.S House general and primary elections, state primary and general elections, and county offices, beginning in 2022. The initiative is supported by Yes on 2 for Ranked Choice Voting.

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Minnetonka, Minnesota

The city council of Minnetonka, Minnesota voted unanimously to put forward a referendum this November on folding nonpartisan primary elections into a general election held with ranked choice voting for mayor and city council. If passed, Minnetonka would join three Minnesota cities that already use RCV. For more on the campaign, visit Ranked Choice Voting Minnetonka.

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Additional notes:

(1) North Dakota Voter’s First, a grassroots coalition, submitted 36,000 signatures for a ballot initiative that would have enacted several changes, including a "Top Four Primary" with ranked choice voting. It was approved by the Secretary of State, but the North Dakota Supreme Court on August 25th removed it from the ballot because it ruled that petitions should have included the full text of the ballot measure.

(2) Open Primaries Arkansas, a grassroots coalition that gathered sufficient signatures to earn a place on the November ballot, also was deeply disappointed to have its "Top Four Primary" with ranked choice voting struck from the ballot by the Arkansas Supreme Court on procedural grounds involving signature collection.

(3) Maine voters may have a November referendum on its new law to extend use of ranked choice voting to general and primary elections for president. The Maine Supreme Court is reviewing a dispute over whether referendum proponents gathered sufficient signatures to earn a place on the ballot and block use of RCV in the presidential election.

(4) Several additional cities seriously considered placing ranked choice voting on the ballot and are likely to take action in 2021-22. Other cities are expected to establish RCV for their 2021 elections by action of the city council.

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