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Letter to the Editor: a note on ranked-choice voting

October 16, 2020

This piece represents the opinion of the author.

To the Editor:

Though I hesitate to prolong the debate in this publication over Progressives’ voting habits, I object to Theo Danzig’s argument in his recent Letter to the Editor that a vote for Howie Hawkins in Maine is “reckless.”

For Hawkins to be awarded four electoral votes, as in Mr. Danzig’s nightmare scenario, an overwhelming number of progressives and moderates (including many voters in the more conservative second district) would need to rank Hawkins first. This seems virtually impossible in a state that is far better acquainted with Biden and generally more sympathetic to the viewpoints he espouses. Furthermore, given the gravity of this election, I doubt that the few voters who do rank Hawkins first will not rank Biden second. The system we have in place allows progressives in Maine to safely vote their conscience and know that their choice will not hurt Biden’s chances.

Mr. Danzig certainly has the right to be concerned about the outcome of this election. Nonetheless, his letter fails to recognize the fundamental nature of Maine politics and of ranked-choice voting, and his moralizing tone does little to win over the voters he is trying to convince.

Sincerely,

Lowell Ruck ’21

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