To the editor:

Something is wrong with our elections. Our current president was not the majority pick of his party — at no point was he above 50% during the 2016 primary. However, after he won, it’s hard to find those conservatives of conscience who rightly criticized this man before his nomination. Democrats fare no better. In their eagerness to capitalize on the negative partisanship the current outrager-in-chief has generated, they’ve nominated a man whose signature policy is, “Hey, I ain’t that guy.” And again, honest, regular people are asked to hold their noses and choose the lesser of two evils – they are asked to compromise their values and their morals to vote for a candidate they don’t really support because the other candidate is truly frightening.

The current winner-take-all elections result in minority rule and it demoralizes the average voter. It ruins us on the inside and with each passing election, we become more and more disheartened until finally, we recognize the futility of the practice and give up all together. There is no reason in a three-way race why the candidate who got 35% of the vote should win outright when the next closest candidate got 34% and the third got 31%. In reality, this is a three-way tie in need of a tiebreak. One obvious solution is so-called, “ranked-choice voting,” a rather esoteric term when in reality it is nothing more than ensuring majority rule.

Anyone with more than two children or with two or more siblings is already well-versed in this system of voting. It’s they way we figure out what pizza we can all agree on, or what soda to get, or what movie to go see. We may not get exactly what we want all the time, but we at least get something agreeable. (And you don’t get stuck with pineapple pizza just because two of your brothers conspired against you!)

In general, the people of this commonwealth understand that the problem is not Republicans and the solution is not Democrats. We won’t really have any choice in our elections until we adopt majority rules voting, i.e., ranked-choice voting. I encourage all to reach out to Voter Choice Massachusetts and sign their ballot initiative to give the people of the commonwealth back their voice and their choice by enacting majority rules voting in this state. This simple reform is almost cost free and can remedy some of the worst aspects of the current two-party process. We need our votes to matter and we need majority rule; neither of which is possible in the current winner-take-all system.

Tristan R. Brown

Peabody

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