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Maine Judge Denies Request To Block Use Of Ranked-Choice Voting In November Election

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Robert F. Bukaty
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AP Images
Ballots are prepared to be tabulated for Maine's Second Congressional District's House election Monday, Nov. 12, 2018, in Augusta.

One day after hearing oral arguments, Federal Judge Lance Walker has denied a request by opponents of ranked-choice voting (RCV) to block its use in the U.S. Senate election this November.

Walker says RCV is constitutional; he made the same determination in 2016.

The lawsuit contends the voting system disenfranchises old and uneducated voters who don't understand how it works and therefore select only a first choice without ranking the rest of the candidates.

In a press release Friday afternoon, Cara McCormick, treasurer of the Committee for Ranked Choice Voting, says Maine voters have made it clear they like ranked-choice voting and want to use it.

RCV opponents faced another setback earlier this week when Maine Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap said a Republican-backed, "people's veto" petition drive is still short of the signatures it needs. The GOP-backed effort wants voters to reject the law, which allows voters to rank candidates in presidential elections.

Originally published 5:42 p.m. August 14, 2020

Ed is a Maine native who spent his early childhood in Livermore Falls before moving to Farmington. He graduated from Mount Blue High School in 1970 before going to the University of Maine at Orono where he received his BA in speech in 1974 with a broadcast concentration. It was during that time that he first became involved with public broadcasting. He served as an intern for what was then called MPBN TV and also did volunteer work for MPBN Radio.