NEWSOM SPOTLIGHTS IMPORTANCE
Offers reminder on ranked choice voting method
Mayor Gavin Newsom
From the Mayor's Office of Communications
November 1, 2005
Speaking at Portsmouth Square in Chinatown, Mayor Newsom yesterday
urged San Franciscans to vote while also focusing on the recently
implemented Ranked-Choice Voting Method. Ranked-choice voting
allows voters to rank a first, second, third, choice for a single
On November 8, 2005, San Franciscans will vote in contests for
three local offices: Assessor-Recorder, Treasurer and City Attorney.
In addition, voters will decide on nine local ballot measures
and eight statewide measures. The November 8th election will be
the second election in which San Franciscans use ranked-choice
voting to elect local officials. Voters amended the City Charter
in March 2002 to require the use of the new voting method.
"The right to vote is an important and fundamental right
that must never be taken for granted," said Mayor Newsom.
"An effective government is one that is responsive and accountable
to its citizens and voting allows for the opportunity to have
a voice in the political process," Newsom continued.
Ranked-choice votes are counted by having all first-choice votes
counted first, and if a candidate receives a majority (50%+1)
of the first-choice votes, that candidate is elected. If no candidate
receives a majority of the first-choice votes, a process of eliminating
candidates and transferring votes begins. The candidate who received
the fewest number of first choice votes is eliminated, and votes
cast for the eliminated candidate are transferred to the voter's
next-choice candidate. The votes are then recounted. If any candidate
receives a majority of the remaining votes, that candidate is
elected. If no candidate receives a majority of the remaining
votes, the process of eliminating candidates and transferring
votes is repeated, until one candidate receives a majority.
Jackson Zhou, Community Outreach Coordinator
for San Francisco Department of Elections
San Francisco voters will use ranked choice voting to elect the
following officials: Mayor, Sheriff, District Attorney, City Attorney,
Treasurer, Assessor-Recorder, Public Defender, and members of
the Board of Supervisors. The recently implemented Ranked Choice
Voting does not apply to candidates for School Board, Community
College Board, nor candidates for State and Federal Office.
Charles McNulty, San Francisco Department of Elections
Arturo Cosenza, San Francisco Department of Elections