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Maine's Ranked-Choice Voting Timeline

Maine voters have voiced their support for ranked-choice voting (RCV) despite multiple attempts by politicians to undermine the will of the people. Here’s a brief history of RCV in Maine to remind everyone.

I’ve lost track of how many times Maine voters have voiced their support for ranked-choice voting (RCV) despite multiple attempts by politicians to undermine the will of the people, so here’s a brief history of RCV in Maine to remind everyone.

2014-15: Volunteers in Maine gather 75,000 signatures to put RCV on the ballot.

2016: Voters in Maine pass RCV statewide, making Maine the first state in the nation to do so. 

The citizen’s initiative gets the second most votes of any initiative in the history of Maine.

2017: Not so fast. 

The Maine Legislature passes legislation to repeal RCV that the people just voted for.

2017: Volunteers reiterate support for RCV. 

They gather 80,000 signatures in the dead of Maine winter to freeze the original law in place and put RCV back on the ballot in June 2018.

June 2018: Maine uses RCV statewide for the first time. 

It enjoys broad public support. Voters pass the People's Veto on the same day, preserving and protecting RCV for the future. The campaign wins by 8 percentage points.

November 2018: RCV is used in the general election. 

The GOP is grumpy about the result because they lose a House seat — maybe because the candidate refused to ask for second choice votes.

Rep. Poliquin
Republican Rep. Bruce Poliquin of Maine submitted an appeal to a federal court to challenge their support of RCV. (Tasos Katopodis/Stringer/Getty Images)

2018: The measure is challenged in state and federal court. 

RCV wins every court battle. A federal judge appointed by President Trump rules that RCV is perfectly legal.

2019: Voters in Maine pressure the Legislature to expand use of RCV to presidential contests

Legislature passes RCV for president, making Maine the first state in the nation to do so. 

Voters gather at polling booths to cast ballots in the November election. (Hill Street Studios/Getty Images)

2020: During a global pandemic, GOP risks the health of volunteers and Maine citizens to organize a People’s Veto to overturn the will of the people AGAIN.


The people of Maine have made it crystal clear: Every time voters are asked, they push for expansion of Ranked-Choice Voting and have rejected all attempts to repeal or block it. Those who think otherwise are clearly not on the side of Maine voters.