Jan 26, 2011

NH: Approval Voting Bill Introduced in State House

Via Independent Political Report:

From PileusBlog.com, H/T to Dale Sheldon-Hess (excerpt of the bill’s actual text below):
A bill to adopt approval voting has been filed in the N.H. House, and one of the co-sponsors is a member of the relevant committee. The bill would establish approval voting for all state offices and presidential primaries. Approval voting is an electoral system for single-winner elections that allows voters to cast not more than one vote for as many candidates as they like and selects the top vote-getter. Steven Brams and other political scientists have endorsed the system as an alternative to plurality rule (or “first-past-the-post”) because a) approval voting is more likely than plurality to select a Condorcet winner when there is one, b) approval voting tends to favor candidates with even temperament and broad ideological appeal, and c) approval voting is more likely than plurality to permit victories by independent and third-party candidates.
From the bill:
AN ACT allowing voters to vote for multiple candidates for an office.
SPONSORS: Rep. D. McGuire, Merr 8; Rep. DeJong, Hills 9; Rep. Cohn, Merr 6; Rep. Bowers, Sull 3
COMMITTEE: Election Law
This bill eliminates statutory restrictions on the ability of voters to vote for multiple candidates for the same office….
4 Instructions to Voters. Amend RSA 659:17 to read as follows:
659:17 Marking the Ballot; Instructions to Voters. The secretary of state shall provide on the top of the general election ballot the following voting instructions. The secretary of state is authorized to replace the phrase “Make the appropriate mark” with an appropriate description and example of the mark to be made for the type of ballot in use, such as “Make a cross (X) in the box,” “Completely fill in the oval,” or “Complete the arrow”:
1) To Vote
Make the appropriate mark to the right of your choice or choices. [For each office vote for not more than the number of candidates stated in the sentence: “Vote for not more than ___.” If you vote for more than the stated number of candidates, your vote for that office will not be counted.]
2) To Vote by Write-In
To vote for a person whose name is not printed on the ballot, write in the name of the person in the “write-in” space. Make the appropriate mark to the right of your choice.

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