Ranked Choice Voting

By Adam Friedman 

As the nation was thrown into a tailspin with the upset victory of Donald Trump, Maine provided a glimmer of hope for our fragile democracy. Voters there passed Question 5, making Maine the first state in US history to institute ranked-choice voting (RCV) for all federal and state elections.

Why does ranked-choice voting matter? Because our current voting system is rigged against anyone who isn’t a Democrat or a Republican, and RCV is arguably the best way to break this duopoly. Ranked-choice voting allows you to rank your candidates in the order you prefer them -- 1, 2, 3 -- and would allow to vote your true values, say by ranking Gary Johnson as your first choice, and then the more tolerable major-party candidate as your second choice. If your first choice gets eliminated in an instant runoff round, your vote transfers to your second choice. You can even rank as many candidates as there are running, and express your preference thoroughly and honestly. The fear of the “spoiler candidate” is a thing of the past. This means more votes, more legitimacy, and more power for Libertarians.

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What do Libertarians do Now?

Now that Donald Trump has avoided a coup of faithless electors, and has officially taken the oath of office, he is now the 45th President of the United States. It would have been so much better to have had Gary Johnson take the oath of office quietly in some back room at the capital, but alas, I am a Toby Keith fan, so I guess my extorted tax dollars paid for some good entertainment. 

The question now is, “What Do Us Libertarians Do?” As a third major party, we have the ability to put our candidate on the ballot in all 50 states without having to collect millions of signatures, so as long as we choose wisely, our candidate will appear on the ballot alongside Donald Trump, whomever the Democrats select (probably Cory Booker) and whomever the Green Party nominates (probably Jill Stein) in 2020.

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The National Popular Vote is a Fake News Story

If you are talking about the popular vote as something real, you are helping to spread fake news. I'm not a Trump supporter. I'm not trying to justify the Electoral College. I don’t dispute that if if you add up all the votes cast for all 18 candidates on the ballots in the combined 50 states, Hillary Clinton’s total is higher than any other candidates.

I'm asking you to look at the reality of how our elections work. Whether you like it or not, the Electoral College is how the winner of the election was determined and that's the ONLY race the candidates were trying to win.

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Convention Report

The Libertarian Association of Massachusetts held its annual convention on October 1, 2016, at the Doubletree Hotel in Westborough, MA. There were 110 attendees who came to participate in LAMA business, and hear from our featured speakers, which included Arvin Vohra, Vice Chair of the national LP; Executive coaching and consultant, Larry Sharpe; investing consultant and Bitcoin Association founder Bruce Fenton; decorated Iraq War veteran, liberty activist, and talk show host, Adam Kokesh; Second Amendment supporter, Brent Carlton; Medical Cannabis advocate Nichole Snow; Lori Kenschaft, activist against mass incarceration; and Thomas Simmons, Libertarian candidate for the 1st congressional district.

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Libertarians Organize Ahead of November

Members of the Libertarian Association of Massachusetts met in Westborough over the weekend to mobilize ahead of the presidential election. The Party of Principle, a moniker they’ve adopted in this tumultuous election cycle, saw one of its largest Massachusetts based conventions in years, with activists flocking to hear from big players in Libertarian circles and set goals for the future.

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