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Sunday, April 17, 2011

Hendersonville Instant Runoff Voting - What’s the integrity of your vote worth?

Wrong vote
To The Editor: On April 7, City Council voted to continue instant runoff voting (IRV). Here is why that vote was wrong:

IRV, unlike “one man, one vote” majority, is confusing, disenfranchises voter groups and lacks transparency because second- and third-round votes are not required to be counted.

IRV has unintended consequences. In the N.C. Court of Appeals race, the winner lost. Judge Thigpen received 100,000 more votes than his opponent. Second-round votes elected the loser.

The 2010 election discredited IRV. The majority of N.C. legislators, including the governor, do not support IRV.

State Board of Elections Chairman Larry Leake is against using an uncertified software tallying program. “I’m a lot leery about it,” Leake said. “The computer experts acknowledge there are potential problems with the system” (

IRV devalues first-round votes. If the ballot goes to the second round, minority votes count more than your first-round vote.

Elected officials don’t necessarily honor the will of IRV voters. In the most recent city election, the clear third choice of the voters was overlooked in the appointment made by council members.

The only benefit being touted by the small number of proponents left is money saved.

What’s the integrity of your vote worth?

Eva L. Ritchey


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