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From the States

Georgia General Assembly moves to ban ranked-choice voting

by Harry Roth

The state of Georgia has taken a lot of heat over the last few years for working to improve its election laws. A bill signed back in 2021 was even branded as “Jim Crow 2.0” by the media. The funny thing is that voter turnout actually increased after the bill was signed.

Now, the Georgia state legislature is taking steps to protect voters from ranked-choice voting. A bill to ban RCV passed the Senate last month, which is similar to bills working their way through state legislatures around the country.

So why hasn’t the media called the legislature's move to ban RCV “Jim Crow 2.0?" Maybe because some of ranked-choice voting’s most prominent critics are black Americans. One example is Former NAACP President Hazel Dukes, who called ranked-choice voting “voter suppression.”

A recent study conducted by the Center for Election Confidence showed that RCV disenfranchises minority voters by disqualifying their ballots at higher rates. Prominent black activists and elected officials in Oakland are circulating a petition to repeal RCV after feeling disenfranchised during the last mayoral election and witnessing a failed election for school board.

By moving to ban ranked-choice voting, Georgia and other states are protecting their voters from a system known for delays, ballot exhaustion, and longer lines at the polls. Elected officials and voters alike are starting to see the system for what it really is and are addressing the problem head on. Every state in America should do the same.

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