Ranked Choice Voting

By National Conference of State Legislatures

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Nearly every state uses a similar system for casting and counting votes—voters select one candidate per race on a ballot and the candidate that receives the most votes wins. This is known as plurality voting or winner-take-all. Plurality voting isn’t the only option, though. In November 2016, the state of Maine became the first in the nation to enact a different system for most elections, one called Ranked-Choice Voting (RCV). The citizens’ initiative called for RCV to be used in U.S. Senate, U.S. House, governor, state senator and state representative races. For many, the question soon became: What is RCV?

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