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Massachusetts' Upcoming Election - Professor Ponders Question 2

October, 2020

Election Day is right around the corner in Massachusetts and QCC has taken an active role in encouraging its community to get out and vote through motivational student videos that encourage people to vote.

In Massachusetts, there is more on the ballot than choosing a president, vice president and other elected officials. Registered voters are also being asked to decide on two binding statewide ballot questions- wireless vehicle data and ranked-choice voting.          

Adjunct Faculty member Mark Bashour recently discussed rank-choice voting with his State and Local Government class and the Wyvern Guardian. 

What exactly is Question 2?

Question 2 is a referendum, which calls for a change in how we vote on Election Day. The change that Question 2 proposes would apply to primary elections as well as to the general election.

What is being proposed?

Ranked Choice Voting lets voters to rank candidates on the ballot in order of preference: first, second, third, etc. If one candidate receives a majority (more than 50%) of the first-choice votes, they win! If not, the candidate with the fewest votes is dropped, and those votes count instantly towards the next choice on each voter’s ballot. This process repeats in rounds (a runoff) until one candidate has a majority, according to the website 

What election races would this process be used?

This process would be used to determine the races for all of our state legislators, as well as our statewide officers from the governor to state auditor.  It would also be used to determine our US senator and representative races.

Why do you believe people are opposed to this change?

The opponents say that this will be too confusing to ever work. I think that perhaps with some fine- tuning it could work very well. The problem is the public has not had the process clearly explained to them, and it is hard to vote for something so important that you do not fully understand.

Do you feel both sides have given good arguments as to why this process should be used moving forward?       

The proponents of this referendum should be much more specific about the logistics of their process. The opponents have been far from convincing in why it would be detrimental to have such a system.      

QCC wants to ensure your vote is heard so make sure to get out and vote on November 3, if you haven't already! To learn more visit, QCC Votes.