This morning’s report from Fairvote.org shows that instant runoff voting was approved by voters in all four places where it was on the ballot. Besides Pierce County, Minneapolis and the California cities of Davis and Oakland opted for IRV.
Here’s an update from Rob Ritchie of Fairvote.org:
IRV and ranked choice voting advocates celebrated on November 7th with wins of 68%-32% in Oakland (CA) and 65%-35% in Minneapolis (MN) and, with ballots still to be counted likely to increase the margins slightly, 54%-46% in Davis (CA) and 53% to 47% in Pierce County (WA).
The wins in Davis and Minneapolis marked the first ballot measure wins for choice voting, the proportional voting version of IRV, in a half-century. Stay tuned for a full FairVote report on the victories and state and congressional elections that underscore the value of IRV in our politics.
Since instant runoff voting’s ground-breaking win in March 2002 in San Francisco, it has been on the ballot in eight cities and counties. The result? 8-0.
The change in Pierce County starts with the 2008 election and applies only to county elected offices, with the exception of judges and the prosecutor. Sequoia Voting Systems, whose optical scan voting machines Pierce County uses, already has a $340,000 contract with the City of Oakland to provide tabulation software for IRV.
That’s why it should be relatively simple for Pierce County to acquire the software it needs to implement IRV, and it has two years to prepare for it. That’s why I discount County Executive John Ladenburg’s claims that the county will be hand-counting IRV ballots in 2008.