Thursday, July 26, 2007

Make It Work

The following is excerpted from Peter Callaghan's column in the July 26, 2007 Tacoma News Tribune.

IRV – When the official reasons for taking action don’t make sense, it’s a good bet that the stated reasons aren’t the real reasons. Take the effort by the Pierce County Council and the county executive to delay, disrupt and even kill the instant runoff voting experiment that was approved by voters – over the objections of the political establishment – just last year.

There is nothing wrong with IRV – sometimes called ranked-choice voting – that can’t be fixed in time for the 2008 election. That’s what county Auditor Pat McCarthy says after working all spring with a task force to implement the system.

So why is the council and the executive saying the system won’t work, or at least can’t be made to work by next year? Could it be because Councilmen Shawn Bunney, Terry Lee and Calvin Goings are running for executive and don’t want to be subjected to a voting system they can’t control or predict?
And could it be that they didn’t like it in the first place and resent that voters don’t listen to their leaders?

If there is any doubt, remember this is the same bunch that supports extending the term limits of the auditor from two terms to three. No one is asking for such a change, but it just might keep McCarthy out of the county executive race next year, leaving the field more open for the above-referenced council members.

Try this: We voted for IRV. Make it work.



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