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HomeBreaking NewsWisconsin Republicans Blast Ranked Choice Voting Proposal

Wisconsin Republicans Blast Ranked Choice Voting Proposal

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“Final five or ranked-choice voting has to be one of the most foolish pieces of legislation I’ve seen introduced this session, and that’s saying a lot” – Rep. Barb Dittrich

There is not a lot of Republican support for a plan to change how Wisconsin would vote in upcoming elections.

The Senate Committee on Elections heard a plan to introduce ranked choice voting in the state.

“Right now, the parties are incentivized to hold power, and they do that through party primaries,” former Wisconsin Republican Congressman Reid Ribble, said during the hearing. “What final five [voting] does is eliminate partisan primaries.”

The ranked voting plan has support from both Republicans and Democrats at the Wisconsin Capitol.

A score of Republicans criticized the plan after the hearing.

Rep. Rick Gundrum, R-Slinger, said ranked-choice voting makes elections less secure and less transparent.

“It will reduce voter confidence, and threaten accurate ballot counting, Gundrum said.

Rep. Barb Dittrich, R-Oconomowoc, went further.

“Final five or ranked-choice voting has to be one of the most foolish pieces of legislation I’ve seen introduced this session, and that’s saying a lot,” Dittrich said on social media.

She said Wisconsin needs more election transparency, not less.

Ranked choice voting has the top five vote-getters in the primary election move on to the general election, regardless of party. From there, voters would rank the candidates from first choice to last choice. The candidate with the most overall votes, not just first-place votes, would win.

Maine and Alaska are currently the only states that use a ranked-choice system. Though a number of counties and cities across the US use it for local elections.

Sen. Duey Stroebel, R-Cedarburg, said ranked-choice voting would be a terrible fit for Wisconsin.

“Not only does it over complicate the process, it completely erodes the principle of ‘one person, one vote,’” Stroebel said.

Stroebel and other Republicans have introduced a constitutional amendment that would ban the use of ranked-choice voting in the state.

Ben Yount - The Center Square
The Center Square contributor
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