Tuesday, September 02, 2008

How to Vote in the Pierce County Executive race

In November, the Pierce County Executive race will be one of the first ever Ranked Choice Voting elections in the state of Washington. Voters will be allowed to list their first, second and third choices for the position.

Since there are four elected officials (Tacoma City Councilmember Mike Lonergan, Pierce County Auditor Pat McCarthy, Pierce County Councilmembers Calvin Goings and Shawn Bunney) running for the position, we don't expect that any one candidate will receive a majority of the first choices so second and third choices are likely to be important in this race. Below, as a public service, we describe how various voters should vote in this race.

"Independent - I hate the two party system" voter

First choice is obviously Mike Lonergan of the Executive Excellence party. Second choice is probably middle of the road Democrat Pat McCarty and third choice is Republican Shawn Bunney just so you have one of each.

"Anybody But a Republican" voter

First choice is probably Calvin Goings with Pat McCarthy a close second choice. Third choice is obviously Mike Lonergan. This means only Republican Shawn Bunney is not listed as a choice.

"I am a Republican" voter

First choice is obviously Shawn Bunney. Many of these voters will stop right there. However, my guess is that many of them will list Mike Lonergan as their second choice.

"Third parties are the lunatic fringe" voter

Pat McCarthy is a middle of the road candidate so earns the first choice. Shawn Bunney is a moderate Republican, so earns the second choice. Calvin Goings is then the third choice.

"Executive Experience is important" voter

Mike Lonergan has the most executive experience, so earns the first choice. Pat McCarthy has executive experience as well, so earns the second choice.

"Tree hugger" voter

Calvin Goings is the clear first choice here. Shawn Bunney earns the second choice. We aren't sure about the third choice.

"Social justice" voter

This is close between Goings and Lonergan. We give the first choice to Calvin Goings by a nose. Second choice Mike Lonergan. Third choice to Shawn Bunney for his vote on domestic partners.

"Low taxes" voter

Not many good choices here. However, probably oppose Calvin Goings, so ... first choice Shawn Bunney with a lack of enthusiasm. Second choice Mike Lonergan. Third choice Pat McCarthy.

Readers are encouraged to come up with their own examples. Please comment.



At 9:29 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Lonergan is pretty weak on civil liberties. The "civil liberties voter" would list Calvin Goings as first choice, Shawn Bunney as second choice and Pat McCarthy as third choice.

At 9:37 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.


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