The June 27 news article “Elrich and Blair are neck and neck in Montgomery County executive race” reported a virtual tie between County Council member Marc Elrich (at large) and businessman David Blair in the race for the Democratic nomination for Montgomery County executive.
This is exactly the outcome predicted in the June 15 editorial “How to make voting more democratic,” which backed ranked-choice voting. More than 40 percent of Montgomery County Democratic primary voters chose neither Mr. Elrich nor Mr. Blair and so have no influence on who the new executive will likely be. On my side of the Potomac River, it is arguable that Corey A. Stewart, chairman of the Prince William Board of County Supervisors, might not be the Republican nominee for Senate had we had ranked-choice voting in that primary. Similarly, we narrowly escaped his nomination for governor in last year’s primaries, because the “Main Street” Republican vote in that primary was split between Ed Gillespie and state Sen. Frank W. Wagner (Virginia Beach).
Nationally, it’s very plausible that ranked-choice voting in the Republican nomination process would have resulted in one of the other candidates than Donald Trump being their standard-bearer in the most recent presidential election.
I have voted in ranked-choice elections, in city council elections in Cambridge, Mass., and have seen the effect of ranked choice in enabling any group with substantial backing in the community to get some representation in that multi-member elected body. It’s a better way to go.
Dave Schutz, Arlington
The writer is a member of FairVote Virginia.