Wednesday, April 13, 2005

Republicans, Rob Arkley and RCV

Only sketchy info on this, so far, but it seems some prominent local Republicans- Mike Harvey and Rob Arkley- are opposed to the idea of bringing Ranked Choice Voting (RCV), also known as Instant Runoff Voting, to Humboldt County. From what little I've seen, their opposition seems to center on the fact that the idea is being proposed mostly by "extreme leftists". While that may be at least partially true, I see no reason to throw the baby out with the bath water.

As a Libertarian, I tend to see myself outside of the partisan battles that the Left and Right involve themselves in. I can oppose or support any issue from any side of the aisle as long as it's consistent in increasing or maintaining individual liberty. I don't know whether to laugh or cry when I see people runnning down other's ideas simply because of what side of the aisle they're on. I suppose I mostly laugh because it seems, too often, they get more involved in the partisan battle itself, than the issue at hand and it just seems silly.

I would think RCV would appeal to people from all sides since they could really vote for whom they want without the "wasted vote" syndrome making them vote for someone just cause they think they have the best chance of winning. There's certainly no guarantee what the results of such elections would be. Might not really change much, from a Libertarian standpoint. But, it still seems to be a better way to hold elections than the way we do it now.

That said, I've always maintained that the way elections are held isn't really a Libertarian issue. Sure, everyone (well most folks, anyway) wants clean and fair elections. But I think a Libertarian should be more concerned with what politicians do TO us AFTER they're elected rather than the election process itself.


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