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Officials Question Constitutionality of Ranked-Choice Voting

AUGUSTA, Maine - A top election official says a ballot question that would provide ranked-choice voting in Maine elections could violate the state Constitution.

The Portland Press Herald reports that Deputy Secretary of State Julie Flynn says she's concerned that candidates elected under the system could be challenged in court if voters approve the ballot question.

Flynn, the head of the elections office, says the issue involves whether elected officials can be chosen by a majority, rather than a plurality, as the constitution provides.

Kyle Bailey, campaign manager for the Committee for Ranked Choice Voting, says the group consulted with legal experts and was assured that the system is constitutional.

He says the campaign is proposing to implement the system in 2018. That would give the Legislature time to make changes.