Voices & Choices

The Baltimore Sun backs ranked choice voting to open up Maryland politics

The Baltimore Sun backs ranked choice voting to open up Maryland politics

Ranked choice voting continues to win editorial support as discontent grows with low plurality wins and an exclusionary two-party duopoly.

The latest to back the reform is the editorial board of The Baltimore Sun, which named ranked choice voting among several key reforms to cure the state’s political maladies.

Noting its growing popularity - including the historic debut in Maine earlier this year - The Sun writes, “it offers a chance for voters to feel that their voices are being heard.”

Empowering voters to know their ballots matter is particularly relevant in Maryland, where closed primaries exclude the unaffiliated voters who make up an increasing percentage of the electorate, according to The Sun.

“Being unaffiliated means you have no say about which names appear on the November ballot, and given the lopsided partisan leanings of many districts, the primary is often the only election that counts.”

If open primaries, which let voters of any or no party affiliation participate, are a “clear first step,” ranked choice voting is a logical second - giving voters a real choice on who best represents their viewpoints without fear of spoilers or vote-splitting. Furthermore, it ensures candidates win with the broadest possible support of voters - preventing the plurality outcomes Maryland saw in many of its crowded primaries, including the Democratic nomination for governor, The Sun points out.

Read the editorial here.

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