VT Edition: The Future Of IRV

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Burlington has been using Instant Runoff Voting since 2005, when the Legislature agreed to allow Vermont’s largest city to adopt the system in which a voter ranks mayoral candidates in order of preference, rather than voting for just one candidate. Supporters say it’s the fairest way to decide a race with several candidates because it ensures that the winning candidate is supported by a majority of voters. But detractors say it’s inherently unfair, because it can allow a second or third place finisher to be elected.

As Burlington debates whether to keep its IRV system, VPR’s Bob Kinzel hears the pros and cons from two of the city’s lawmakers: Rep. Jason Lorber, who supports IRV, and Rep. Kurt Wright, who lost the 2009 Burlington mayor’s race in the third round of IRV tabulation.

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