Ranked-choice voting likely violates state law

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Recently, I responded to each of the Scarborough voters that sent me postcards expressing support for the November ballot question regarding ranked-choice voting.

I take my oath of office seriously, thus I feel it is my duty to share my concerns regarding the legality of this far-reaching proposal.

Since ballot questions are initiated by the public and are rarely reviewed by legislators, I drafted a letter of request seeking a legal opinion from Attorney General Janet Mills, and Senate President Michael Thibodeau joined my effort. Voters deserve information upon which to base votes.

In a detailed six-page letter dated March 4, Mills concluded, “that L.D. 1557 does raise significant constitutional concerns.”

I am opposed to ranked-choice voting on a statewide basis because it:

• may violate Article V of the Maine Constitution in two ways: plurality requirement and tabulation of ballot changes;

• may lead to costly court challenges;

• would make Maine the only state in the nation to implement ranked-choice voting;

• would be costly to implement – an estimated $1.5 million for new equipment;

• would include federal candidates running for U.S. Senate and House of Representatives, as well as Maine Governor, Maine Senate, and Maine Representatives to the House;

• would involve instant recounts if there are more than two candidates that do not result in a majority;

• would be time consuming;

• may disenfranchise some voters by using the recounted ballots of the loser to determine the winner – in essence, a minority of voters get to vote more than once;

If you have any questions about any of the ballot questions or other legislative matters, please do not hesitate to contact me at Heather.Sirocki@gmail.com or 883-5609.

State Rep. Heather Sirocki

House District 28, part of Scarborough

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