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Utah House votes to abandon ranked-choice voting after tumultuous tryout

Utah Republicans Vote to End Ranked-Choice Voting

Utah Republicans are⁣ one step closer to securing their elections⁣ after the state’s House ⁣of ‌Representatives voted to remove ⁣the option​ for localities to use ranked-choice ​voting.

Ranked-choice voting,⁤ also known as​ “rigged-choice voting” by ​critics, allows voters to rank candidates in ⁢order of preference. If no candidate receives more than 50⁣ percent of first-choice votes, the⁢ last-place finisher is eliminated, and their votes are reallocated ‍to⁤ the voter’s second-choice candidate.⁢ This process continues until one candidate ⁢receives a majority ​of votes.

In 2018, the GOP-controlled legislature approved a pilot program‌ for localities to use ranked-choice voting in municipal elections. However,⁢ the program faced issues, ⁤and now the state’s House has passed HB 290​ to end the program on May 1, 2024.

The bill passed with a 43-26 vote, with 12 Republicans joining the House’s 14 Democrats ​in opposing it. Six Republicans‍ did not vote on the legislation.

Problems with Ranked-Choice Voting

  • Genola, a ⁤town in Utah, experienced ⁤high ‍rates of discarded or spoiled ⁢ballots‍ in its 2021 municipal elections.
  • A study ⁤found that ⁢ranked-choice voting ⁣ballots⁣ are ⁢often discarded due to “ballot ‍exhaustion,” where voters only select one candidate.
  • Utah County Clerk Aaron Davidson reported ⁣a ‌significant decrease in voter turnout in Lehi following⁣ the⁤ implementation ‍of ranked-choice voting.
  • Sandy, another city ⁤in Utah, had to undergo a recount in its 2021⁢ mayoral race ⁣due to voter confusion caused by ranked-choice voting.

These issues ⁣have led ⁤to a decline in the number of Utah municipalities using ranked-choice voting, ​from 23 in 2021 to ⁢12 in 2023.

Utah is not the only state to ⁢face⁢ confusion with ​ranked-choice‌ voting. Alaska⁢ and ​Maine have also experienced controversial election ⁢outcomes due to this voting⁣ method. Several states, including Florida, Tennessee, South Dakota, and⁤ Idaho, have banned ‍ranked-choice voting.


Shawn‌ Fleetwood is a staff writer for The Federalist and a graduate of the University of Mary Washington. His work⁢ has‍ been ⁣featured in numerous outlets, including RealClearPolitics, RealClearHealth, and Conservative Review. Follow⁢ him on Twitter @ShawnFleetwood.

What⁤ is the rationale behind Utah Republicans’ decision to eliminate ranked-choice⁣ voting, and ⁤how does ⁣it impact election results?

Isher is eliminated⁤ and their votes are redistributed⁤ to the remaining candidates based on the‍ voters’ second choices. This process continues until one candidate receives a⁢ majority of the votes.

The decision to eliminate ranked-choice voting in Utah was made by the Republican-dominated House of⁣ Representatives, who argued that ⁣the system was confusing and led to a lack of clarity in election results. Supporters of the measure claim‌ that citizens were not fully understanding the process and that ​it resulted in voter disenfranchisement.

However, critics of the decision argue that the move is a step backward for democracy and could potentially limit voter choice. They believe that ranked-choice voting encourages collaboration and compromise among candidates, rather than the adversarial nature seen in traditional winner-takes-all‍ elections.

Ranked-choice voting has gained‍ popularity in ⁤recent years, with states‍ like Maine using it in their statewide elections. Proponents argue that ​it gives voters more power and allows for more representative⁢ outcomes. They claim that it reduces ⁢the likelihood of spoiler candidates and promotes a more positive and issue-based campaign.

This decision by Utah Republicans may have ⁤broader implications‌ for⁣ the future of ranked-choice voting in the United States. While some states and municipalities have embraced the system, others remain skeptical. This‌ vote sends a message that⁣ the political climate may not be favorable for the expansion of ranked-choice voting.

The debate surrounding ranked-choice voting is ongoing, ⁣with arguments on both sides.‌ While some believe it is‌ a fairer ​and more inclusive system, others view it as overly⁢ complex and potentially prone to ‍manipulation. ⁤It remains to be seen how this decision will impact the future of ranked-choice voting in ⁣Utah and beyond.

In conclusion, Utah Republicans have voted to end ranked-choice voting in the⁣ state, citing confusion and lack of clarity as primary concerns. Critics argue that this is a setback for democracy and limits voter choice. The debate surrounding ranked-choice voting continues,⁢ with⁣ implications for its future use in other states. Only time will tell the lasting impact of this decision.



" Conservative News Daily does not always share or support the views and opinions expressed here; they are just those of the writer."

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