News

Better Ballot Campaign Gains DFL Endorsement

For Immediate Release

May 15, 2006

FFI: www.betterballotcampaign.org, www.fairvotemn.org
Media inquiries: Kelly O’Brien, 612-227-9102, kellyobrien@visi.com

Minneapolis, MN—The Better Ballot Campaign, an effort to bring instant runoff voting (IRV) to Minneapolis elections, passed a significant landmark when the Minneapolis DFL party overwhelmingly endorsed the campaign at its May 13 convention. Over eighty six percent of delegates voted in favor of the endorsement.

The Minneapolis DFL joins scores of neighborhood, social justice, religious and political organizations in supporting this effort.

Instant runoff voting, also known as ranked choice voting, is a method of voting where the candidates are ranked in order of preference. IRV encourages more positive campaigning, eliminates the need for a primary election, demonstrably increases voter turnout, and allows voters to vote for their first choice without inadvertently supporting their worst choice. IRV is used for elections in San Francisco; Cambridge, Mass.; Burlington, Vt.; Ireland and Australia among other places.

Tony Solgård, president of FairVote Minnesota, is encouraged by the DFL endorsement. “I’ve been working for fifteen years to bring Minnesota the good news about how we can improve the quality of our democracy through advanced voting methods. It is satisfying that so many others now see the potential and are taking action.”

The Better Ballot Campaign’s goal is to have the City of Minneapolis Charter amended to allow instant runoff voting for all municipal elections. These races include mayor, city council, park and library boards, and board of estimate and taxation. The Better Ballot Campaign will ask the Minneapolis City Council to put the instant runoff voting amendment proposal on the November general election ballot. It is also conducting a petition drive toward the same goal.

FairVote Minnesota President Tony Solgård, Better Ballot Campaign organizer Jeanne Massey, and others are available to discuss instant runoff voting and the Better Ballot Campaign.

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