In 2019, Vineyard, Utah became one of two cities in the state to pioneer the adoption of ranked choice voting (RCV).
Now, two years later, Vineyard mayor Julie Fullmer hopes her city’s unmitigated success with implementing RCV prompts other municipalities in the state to follow in its path.
In an op-ed for The Daily Herald, titled “Ranked Choice Voting proved common-sense method for Vineyard,” Fullmer details her—and her constituents’— positive experience in implementing, preparing, and conducting RCV elections. Among other benefits, she cites the improvement in civility as one of the major benefits of the switch to RCV.
“[Ranked choice voting] empowered residents to ask more questions and invited candidates better prepared to answer them,” Fullmer writes. “It pressed fair play among candidates and encouraged more civility between neighbors. Individual voters and candidates both discovered they enjoyed the method, found it easy to use, and requested the form for future elections”
Furthermore, Fullmer points out that ranked choice voting—contrary to the claims of its opponents—was simple and efficient for voters. In fact, according to follow-up surveys, more than 86 percent of Vineyard residents agreed RCV was simple and should be used again.
Additionally, despite increased investment in voter education, the method saved Vineyard money, as RCV enabled the city to fold its August primary into the November general election, halving the city’s operational costs.
Given these benefits, Fullmer wholeheartedly endorses RCV and calls for its expansion statewide. Fullmer writes: “Ranked choice voting is a nonpartisan success story that works and would be cost-effective, efficient, and better serve our community.”
We agree, and look forward to the Utah legislature expanding the opportunity to adopt the method.