Resolution Supporting Ranked Choice Voting (RCV) in Sonoma County
WHEREAS in 2002, San Francisco voters adopted Ranked Choice Voting (RCV) at the ballot, a system that allows voters to rank their 1st, 2nd, and 3rd candidate choices and initiates an instant run-off election if no single candidate reaches over 50% of the vote, thereby eliminating the need for voters to return to the polls for a second election; and
WHEREAS other Bay Area communities including San Leandro, Berkeley and Oakland have successfully adopted Ranked Choice Voting (RCV) as the method used in Mayoral and Council seat races; and
WHEREAS in addition to preventing costly and low-turnout run-off elections, Ranked Choice Voting has led to more positive and substantive campaigning and less mudslinging in a number of races, with candidates recognizing the need to appeal to the broader electorate for support; and
WHEREAS compared to winner-take-all systems, Ranked Choice Voting encourages more diversity in candidates and voters, and generally has resulted in an increase in election victories by candidates of color in counties that have adopted it while more than doubling voter turnout in some counties;
NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Sonoma Democratic Party hereby affirms its support of Ranked Choice Voting, as stated in the 2018 California Democratic Party Platform, for selecting Mayor and city council members in all of the cities in Sonoma county, and that it also be used in selecting the county supervisors; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Sonoma Democratic Party calls upon the elected representatives and administrators in each of the city and county jurisdictions mentioned above to take immediate steps to begin the assessment of Ranked Choice Voting, and its implementation as early as the 2022 election cycle for the aforementioned offices.
Resolution adopted by the Sonoma County Democratic Party on July 9, 2019