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Letter: Ranked-choice voting isn’t the only alternative Utah should consider

SHARE Letter: Ranked-choice voting isn’t the only alternative Utah should consider
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Senate President Stuart Adams, R-Layton, opens the Utah Legislature’s 2021 general session in the Senate chamber at the Capitol in Salt Lake City on Tuesday, Jan. 19, 2021.

Kristin Murphy, Deseret News

As the Utah legislative session gets underway, one of the largest discussions centers around alternative voting. There is a push to pass ranked-choice voting as the sole voting method in Utah after some cities and parties have used ranked-choice voting under the current pilot program. However, we should not be so quick to commit to this overhaul.

Ranked-choice voting happens to also be the only alternative method we’ve tried and because of this, it would be hard to contribute any amount of success to ranked-choice voting alone rather than alternatives in general. If we really seek to improve elections in Utah, we should try another top alternative first: approval voting.

Approval voting is a simple alternative that allows voters to choose all of the candidates they like rather than just one. It is extremely cost-effective, doesn’t require major ballot changes, and can be quickly calculated. As someone who is deeply invested in seeing Utah choose the best system possible, I strongly urge the legislature to give Utahns the chance to see how other methods work and only then choose the best one.

Nathaniel Allen

Clinton