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Re: J.C. Mayor Seeks To End Runoff Elections
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Sorry, but it is arrogant for you, Brewster, to speak for someone else. You did not win a runoff election, so allow the person who won respond to my question.

Posted on: 2015/11/6 23:21
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Re: J.C. Mayor Seeks To End Runoff Elections
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Yvonne wrote:
Are you the councilman in Ward A, Brewster? In not, you cannot speak for him. I would like his opinion on the elimination of the runoffs. My opinion is No Runoff, No Democracy. Now it is time for the councilman to speak up.


Again Yvonne you fail at internet, by you inability to use the quote button so we have chance at figuring WTF you're talking about. Please indicate where I spoke for anyone. Oh wait, you thought I was responding to you? How cutely narcissistic to think you're the only person in the thread. See the quote above my post in response to Shatakah? That's how forums work, so people know WTF you're responding to.

Posted on: 2015/11/6 23:09
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Re: J.C. Mayor Seeks To End Runoff Elections
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In Jersey City, runoff elections rarely change initial outcome

By Terrence T. McDonald | The Jersey Journal
on November 06, 2015 at 12:34 PM, updated November 06, 2015 at 5:27 PM

Voters saw a "helluva fight" in 2001, the last time a Jersey City mayoral contest ended in a runoff.

http://www.nj.com/hudson/index.ssf/20 ... _change.html#incart_river

Posted on: 2015/11/6 22:44
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Re: J.C. Mayor Seeks To End Runoff Elections
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Are you the councilman in Ward A, Brewster? In not, you cannot speak for him. I would like his opinion on the elimination of the runoffs. My opinion is No Runoff, No Democracy. Now it is time for the councilman to speak up.

Posted on: 2015/11/6 22:42
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Re: J.C. Mayor Seeks To End Runoff Elections
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shakatah wrote:
Regarding instant runoffs: I don't think they exist in NJ. Also, from the Descriptions outlined in previous posts, I want no one assigning my vote to anyone I did not pull the lever for nor do I want my vote not counted because non of my "preferred candidates" are in the top 2 or 3 or whatever. That is essentially the same as nullifying my vote because my choices are not popular enough.

I'm happy that the council, nor the mayor can unilaterally decide to do away with runoffs when there is no primary process. I think we all need to really think about the power that you hand over to elected officials when you eliminate runoffs in nonpartisan elections. Without runoffs, you are moving the benchmark for winning an election from 50% +1 to something less, 30%, 20%, 15%??? Why would any citizen want to make it easier for people to get elected to office by decreasing the number of people a candidate must get to vote for them?



While your 2nd paragraph is accurate, your 1st shows you fail to understand the concept of ranked voting. Try reading an actual complete description.

Ballots are initially distributed based on each elector's first preference. If a candidate secures more than half of votes cast, that candidate wins. Otherwise, the candidate with the fewest votes is eliminated. Ballots assigned to the eliminated candidate are recounted and added to the totals of the remaining candidates based on who is ranked next on each ballot. This process continues until one candidate wins by obtaining more than half the votes.
IRV has the effect of avoiding split votes when multiple candidates earn support from like-minded voters. For example, suppose there are two similar candidates A & B, and a third opposing candidate C, with raw popularity of 35%, 25% and 40% respectively. In a plurality voting system, candidate C may win with 40% of the votes, even though 60% of electors prefer either A or B. Alternatively, voters are pressured to choose the seemingly stronger candidate of either A or B, despite personal preference for the other, in order to help ensure the defeat of C. It is often the resulting situation that candidate A or B would never get to ballot, whereas voters would be presented a two candidate choice. With IRV, the electors backing B as their first choice can allocate their preferences as #1 for B and #2 for A, which means A will win despite the split vote in first choices.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Instant-runoff_voting.

Your vote only gets moved down the list of your preferences AFTER your preferred choices are no longer in the race at all. It preserves your vote no matter what, all the way down to the final 2. You would be able to vote for an independent but if he/she has been eliminated your vote will go to the major candidate you prefer. It's the ultimate in COUNTING your vote no matter what. And we'll need a change in state law to be able to implement it.

Posted on: 2015/11/6 22:17
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Re: J.C. Mayor Seeks To End Runoff Elections
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Charles Epps won the May 2013 election in Ward A but Frank Gajewski, a Fulop supporter won the runoff. So what is Gajewski's opinion on this matter.

Posted on: 2015/11/6 22:13
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Re: J.C. Mayor Seeks To End Runoff Elections
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Regarding instant runoffs: I don't think they exist in NJ. Also, from the Descriptions outlined in previous posts, I want no one assigning my vote to anyone I did not pull the lever for nor do I want my vote not counted because non of my "preferred candidates" are in the top 2 or 3 or whatever. That is essentially the same as nullifying my vote because my choices are not popular enough.

I'm happy that the council, nor the mayor can unilaterally decide to do away with runoffs when there is no primary process. I think we all need to really think about the power that you hand over to elected officials when you eliminate runoffs in nonpartisan elections. Without runoffs, you are moving the benchmark for winning an election from 50% +1 to something less, 30%, 20%, 15%??? Why would any citizen want to make it easier for people to get elected to office by decreasing the number of people a candidate must get to vote for them?


Posted on: 2015/11/6 21:19
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Re: J.C. Mayor Seeks To End Runoff Elections
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Bamb00zle wrote:
Hmm.... The idea that I might want to withhold my vote as a protest seems out of the picture for you... There are candidates I simply will NOT vote for under any circumstances. If they were the only candidates running, then I wouldn't vote. Perhaps that's why we have such low turn out at our elections - people are smart enough to know that there are times when no one is actually worth voting for.


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NO ONE CARES IF YOU DON"T VOTE!!!!!
******************************
It's not a protest, it's a the political equivalent of wanking in your bedroom. All this means is they've got you right where they want you, out of the picture. Like the 85% who didn't vote in this one.

Posted on: 2015/11/6 1:48
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Re: J.C. Mayor Seeks To End Runoff Elections
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dtjcview wrote:
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Bamb00zle wrote:
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brewster wrote:

Some of your concerns are valid, but I think in the above, you've just got to hold your nose and vote, like I do in almost every election. Your vote would not go to them unless all the candidates you prefered had already been eliminated. Rarely are even heinous candidates equally heinous. If I had to choose between Trump and Carson, I'd be able to make a choice.


What's the downside of allowing optional ranking? If no candidate has an absolute majority, keep the count going till all ranked votes are counted. At that point the candidate with the most votes wins. I want to be certain I can prevent my vote going to a candidate who is an anathema to me. "Holding my nose" and giving my vote to someone who isn't capable of representing me isn't appealing in the least.


Normally - the way ranked voting works is:
1. 1st choice votes are counted. If someone has a clear majority -they win.
2. If not, the candidate with lowest number of votes is eliminated and that candidate's votes are transferred to the voter's 2nd choice candidate.
3. That's repeated until someone gets a clear majority.

Depending on the mechanism, you mightn't have to rank everyone on the ballet - but if you do - put your least favorite last and they won't get your vote. So for example, if there are 5 candidates - the race will be decided by the 3 elimination and 4th count - one of the 2 remaining candidates will have the majority of the ranked votes..


Yes, having voted in a bunch of ranked choice elections in another jurisdication, it's conducted as you've described. So, the redistribution of votes from the candidate with the fewest votes - in effect the least attractive candidate to the electors - could result in candidate 4, or candidate 3 moving up the ranking to pass the candidates with higher "primary" votes, if the ranked votes continue to be distributed. At some point, under some circumstances, I may want my vote NOT to be distributed to a candidate I believe doesn't deserve my vote. The only certain way to allow for that is to permit optional ranking. So if I only "like" 3 of the 5 candidates, I stop at candidate 3. If after distribution of all ranked votes no one gets a clear majority, then then largest vote winner can be declared winner. I don't see that it creates a major issue.

Posted on: 2015/11/6 1:28
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Re: J.C. Mayor Seeks To End Runoff Elections
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brewster wrote:
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Bamb00zle wrote:
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brewster wrote:

Some of your concerns are valid, but I think in the above, you've just got to hold your nose and vote, like I do in almost every election. Your vote would not go to them unless all the candidates you prefered had already been eliminated. Rarely are even heinous candidates equally heinous. If I had to choose between Trump and Carson, I'd be able to make a choice.


What's the downside of allowing optional ranking? If no candidate has an absolute majority, keep the count going till all ranked votes are counted. At that point the candidate with the most votes wins. I want to be certain I can prevent my vote going to a candidate who is an anathema to me. "Holding my nose" and giving my vote to someone who isn't capable of representing me isn't appealing in the least.


The scenario you describe is how many people feel in Nov elections, when the ballot is only the 2 primary winners they hate. One of the 2 you hate is GOING to win. You can't change that. You just seem to want the intellectual firewall of thinking you didn't vote for them. But that's when you need to suck it up and make your best call of who is worse, because one IS. If you can't decide you need to know more, and care about more issues. No 2 candidates are exactly alike on every issue.


Hmm.... The idea that I might want to withhold my vote as a protest seems out of the picture for you... There are candidates I simply will NOT vote for under any circumstances. If they were the only candidates running, then I wouldn't vote. Perhaps that's why we have such low turn out at our elections - people are smart enough to know that there are times when no one is actually worth voting for.

Posted on: 2015/11/6 1:09
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Re: J.C. Mayor Seeks To End Runoff Elections
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Bamb00zle wrote:
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brewster wrote:

Some of your concerns are valid, but I think in the above, you've just got to hold your nose and vote, like I do in almost every election. Your vote would not go to them unless all the candidates you prefered had already been eliminated. Rarely are even heinous candidates equally heinous. If I had to choose between Trump and Carson, I'd be able to make a choice.


What's the downside of allowing optional ranking? If no candidate has an absolute majority, keep the count going till all ranked votes are counted. At that point the candidate with the most votes wins. I want to be certain I can prevent my vote going to a candidate who is an anathema to me. "Holding my nose" and giving my vote to someone who isn't capable of representing me isn't appealing in the least.


Normally - the way ranked voting works is:
1. 1st choice votes are counted. If someone has a clear majority -they win.
2. If not, the candidate with lowest number of votes is eliminated and that candidate's votes are transferred to the voter's 2nd choice candidate.
3. That's repeated until someone gets a clear majority.

Depending on the mechanism, you mightn't have to rank everyone on the ballet - but if you do - put your least favorite last and they won't get your vote. So for example, if there are 5 candidates - the race will be decided by the 3 elimination and 4th count - one of the 2 remaining candidates will have the majority of the ranked votes..

Posted on: 2015/11/5 23:35
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Re: J.C. Mayor Seeks To End Runoff Elections
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Bamb00zle wrote:
Quote:

brewster wrote:

Some of your concerns are valid, but I think in the above, you've just got to hold your nose and vote, like I do in almost every election. Your vote would not go to them unless all the candidates you prefered had already been eliminated. Rarely are even heinous candidates equally heinous. If I had to choose between Trump and Carson, I'd be able to make a choice.


What's the downside of allowing optional ranking? If no candidate has an absolute majority, keep the count going till all ranked votes are counted. At that point the candidate with the most votes wins. I want to be certain I can prevent my vote going to a candidate who is an anathema to me. "Holding my nose" and giving my vote to someone who isn't capable of representing me isn't appealing in the least.


The scenario you describe is how many people feel in Nov elections, when the ballot is only the 2 primary winners they hate. One of the 2 you hate is GOING to win. You can't change that. You just seem to want the intellectual firewall of thinking you didn't vote for them. But that's when you need to suck it up and make your best call of who is worse, because one IS. If you can't decide you need to know more, and care about more issues. No 2 candidates are exactly alike on every issue.

Posted on: 2015/11/5 23:24
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Re: J.C. Mayor Seeks To End Runoff Elections
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brewster wrote:

Some of your concerns are valid, but I think in the above, you've just got to hold your nose and vote, like I do in almost every election. Your vote would not go to them unless all the candidates you prefered had already been eliminated. Rarely are even heinous candidates equally heinous. If I had to choose between Trump and Carson, I'd be able to make a choice.


What's the downside of allowing optional ranking? If no candidate has an absolute majority, keep the count going till all ranked votes are counted. At that point the candidate with the most votes wins. I want to be certain I can prevent my vote going to a candidate who is an anathema to me. "Holding my nose" and giving my vote to someone who isn't capable of representing me isn't appealing in the least.

Posted on: 2015/11/5 23:08
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Re: J.C. Mayor Seeks To End Runoff Elections
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brewster wrote:
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Bamb00zle wrote:
Take for example (numbering sequentially for ease) an election where there are 5 candidates running. I support candidates 1, 2 and 3, but do not want my vote to go to candidate 4 or 5 under any circumstances. The rules should allow me to vote my preferences, 1, 2 and 3, and then stop without indicating a vote for 4 or 5. In some jurisdictions, at least in the past, all 5 preferences had to be completed to make the vote ?valid?. I wouldn't favor that system.


Some of your concerns are valid, but I think in the above, you've just got to hold your nose and vote, like I do in almost every election. Your vote would not go to them unless all the candidates you prefered had already been eliminated. Rarely are even heinous candidates equally heinous. If I had to choose between Trump and Carson, I'd be able to make a choice.

...


The first few elections can be confusing for voters - which is why voter education is key. What quickly happens is candidates themselves catch on - and start publishing their recommended ranking order.

Posted on: 2015/11/5 22:17
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Re: J.C. Mayor Seeks To End Runoff Elections
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Bamb00zle wrote:
Take for example (numbering sequentially for ease) an election where there are 5 candidates running. I support candidates 1, 2 and 3, but do not want my vote to go to candidate 4 or 5 under any circumstances. The rules should allow me to vote my preferences, 1, 2 and 3, and then stop without indicating a vote for 4 or 5. In some jurisdictions, at least in the past, all 5 preferences had to be completed to make the vote ?valid?. I wouldn't favor that system.


Some of your concerns are valid, but I think in the above, you've just got to hold your nose and vote, like I do in almost every election. Your vote would not go to them unless all the candidates you prefered had already been eliminated. Rarely are even heinous candidates equally heinous. If I had to choose between Trump and Carson, I'd be able to make a choice.

Of far greater concern is the state law preventing us from adopting Instant Runoff. I wonder if there's ever been an attempt in NJ to change that? I will say that I once asked Councilman Fulop about instant runoff and he didn't seem in the least interested.

Posted on: 2015/11/5 20:40
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Re: J.C. Mayor Seeks To End Runoff Elections
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It's unclear to me how the run-off election process avoids that problem, since in the example given the top 2 candidates, who presumably go into the run-off, each had only about 10% of the primary votes. Whoever wins the run-off was still initially chosen by a small number of voters. Further, since votes are re-distributed in the instant run-off according to the voters preferred choice, a candidate who came in 3rd or 4th, could win the overall majority of votes. In the ?run-off? system candidates coming in lower down than 1 or 2 in the primary tally are eliminated....

As for ?instant run-off?, it can get kind of complicated, depending on the exact rules. I am mostly in favor of an ?instant run-off? system, as long as the rules are set up in a way to minimize the number of ?wasted? votes, and to allow a voter to stop at a point where they might wish to with-hold their vote.

Take for example (numbering sequentially for ease) an election where there are 5 candidates running. I support candidates 1, 2 and 3, but do not want my vote to go to candidate 4 or 5 under any circumstances. The rules should allow me to vote my preferences, 1, 2 and 3, and then stop without indicating a vote for 4 or 5. In some jurisdictions, at least in the past, all 5 preferences had to be completed to make the vote ?valid?. I wouldn't favor that system.

Additionally, let's say I am OK with all 5 candidates, but make a mistake and number the candidates 1, 2, 3, 3, 5. Just because I made a simple error, I don't want my vote to be cast aside completely. It should be valid and count as a vote up until the point at which the error occurs. Only then, when the intent of the voter is no longer clearly discernible (which of the 3rd choices is the real intended 3rd choice...?) should that vote be excluded from further counting.

One other consideration is that in some close situations with several candidates, the candidate who comes 2nd , or even conceivably further down the list, in the initial tally of votes can be the final winner. That can lead to some lingering doubts about the ?legitimacy? of the victory. Also, depending on the number of candidates and the ?closeness? of the result, it can take some time for the final result to be known, particularly when there are a lot of ?vote-by-mail? ballots to be counted. Computerized systems make that quicker, but there still has to be some level of scrutiny / audit as the mail-in ballots are entered, or scanned. That takes some time, so results aren't always known ?instantly?, as the name might imply.

Overall, I think ?optional preferential? or ?optional ranked? voting is a good idea, but the devil can be in the details, so I'd like to take a close look.

I still wish they'd find a way to mail me a sample ballot ? that really helps for complex ?instant run-off? elections.

Posted on: 2015/11/5 19:45
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Re: J.C. Mayor Seeks To End Runoff Elections
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shakatah wrote:
Yvonne is often off, way off, but if the municipal election is moved to november, which seems likely, you should be concerned if there are no runoffs.

Here's why: Partisan elections have a primary process, nonpartisan elections (Jersey city municipal elections are nonpartisan) don't. Which means that you could have a JC Mayoral election with 10 or 15 candidates and without a runoff the "winner" and your next mayor could be a person that did not get a majority of the vote. So we could end up with a mayor that only 10% of the people voting chose, not 10 of registered voters, 10% OF THE PEOPLE WHO VOTED IN THAT ELECTION. To me that sounds like a perfect recipe to manipulate/control election outcomes that way. That is a problem and a reason the runoffs are necessary in nonpartisan races.

Having the municipal elections in November would increase participation and that is a great thing, but a lot of tricks get played in elections..like one candidate putting in 3rd, 4th, 5th...candidates to split the vote that would otherwise go to their opponent.

Keep the runoff, whether you move the election or not.


Dead on correct. Think about this a little more, those who want to ditch the runoff in this non-partisan style of elections. Its a very dangerous idea to eliminate this as clearly explained here.

Posted on: 2015/11/5 18:53
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Re: J.C. Mayor Seeks To End Runoff Elections
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brewster wrote:
Dolomiti: I might make "Repetition is not an argument" my sig. I thought it might be an old saying, but googling it exactly does not establish a clear provenance. Your use of it is on the 1st Google page of hits. Congrats. Of course the idea itself is old enough to be Latin, "argumentum ad infinitum".

I'm pretty sure I didn't make it up. But heck, I'll take what I can get. :D

Posted on: 2015/11/5 18:11
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Re: J.C. Mayor Seeks To End Runoff Elections
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Yvonne wrote:
No runoffs means no democracy, it is that simple. It means money controls the election.


If it was top of the poll wins - I'd agree that could be manipulated. But what is the issue, if any, with an instant runoff?


(Psst. She doesn't understand it. It's like me trying to explain to my 82 year old mother the difference between seeing email on a desktop app and in a browser window. Just can't process it)

Dolomiti: I might make "Repetition is not an argument" my sig. I thought it might be an old saying, but googling it exactly does not establish a clear provenance. Your use of it is on the 1st Google page of hits. Congrats. Of course the idea itself is old enough to be Latin, "argumentum ad infinitum".

Posted on: 2015/11/5 17:58
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Re: J.C. Mayor Seeks To End Runoff Elections
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Yvonne wrote:
No runoffs means no democracy, it is that simple. It means money controls the election.


If it was top of the poll wins - I'd agree that could be manipulated. But what is the issue, if any, with an instant runoff?

Posted on: 2015/11/5 17:39
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Re: J.C. Mayor Seeks To End Runoff Elections
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Yvonne wrote:
No runoffs means no democracy, it is that simple. It means money controls the election.

For future reference:

Repetition is not an argument.

Posted on: 2015/11/5 17:39
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Re: J.C. Mayor Seeks To End Runoff Elections
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No runoffs means no democracy, it is that simple. It means money controls the election.

Posted on: 2015/11/5 17:10
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Re: J.C. Mayor Seeks To End Runoff Elections
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Yvonne wrote: The deck is stacked by developers with their chosen candidate. Of course their puppet candidate does not want any challengers which is another term for getting rid of runoffs.
<< SMH >> Read it again. Machine politicians TAKE ADVANTAGE of the non-partisan / runoff system. They put friendly candidates on the ballot, to bleed off votes, knowing they'll be in a stronger position in the runoff. There is absolutely nothing about runoffs that thwarts big money interests.

Posted on: 2015/11/5 16:07
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Re: J.C. Mayor Seeks To End Runoff Elections
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Yvonne wrote:
The people who works the polls are usually senior citizens on fixed income. Apparently, Fulop has no problems taking away their income
You've got to be effing kidding me. Christ Yvonne, you really have lost your damn mind. How much are those poll workers really making during the day? $80? And since when are you in favor or the city government spending money just to spend money?


I don't like runoff elections, they're dumb. And the idea that somehow a runoff will help people get to know candidates is absurd. That's why you have the election in the first place. If you don't know the damn candidates, that's your own fault!

I don't like the idea of someone winning an election with 30% of the vote, which is why we need preferential voting or instant runoff!

Posted on: 2015/11/5 15:31
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Re: J.C. Mayor Seeks To End Runoff Elections
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The deck is stacked by developers with their chosen candidate. Of course their puppet candidate does not want any challengers which is another term for getting rid of runoffs.

Posted on: 2015/11/5 15:21
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Re: J.C. Mayor Seeks To End Runoff Elections
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Quote:

Yvonne wrote:
That is not true, yes there will be a well funded candidate back by the developers but he/she will have to prove himself/herself against an unknown.

So what?

Nothing stops a developer from contributing to a campaign after the 1st round.


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Throughout JC history, the runoffs have made a difference.

Yes, apparently it has -- when machine politicians stack the deck, by putting their cohorts on the ballot to draw off votes.

The runoff system doesn't help independents. It screws them.

Instant runoff is a much better system for non-partisan elections.

Posted on: 2015/11/5 14:41
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Re: J.C. Mayor Seeks To End Runoff Elections
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Yvonne is often off, way off, but if the municipal election is moved to november, which seems likely, you should be concerned if there are no runoffs.

Here's why: Partisan elections have a primary process, nonpartisan elections (Jersey city municipal elections are nonpartisan) don't. Which means that you could have a JC Mayoral election with 10 or 15 candidates and without a runoff the "winner" and your next mayor could be a person that did not get a majority of the vote. So we could end up with a mayor that only 10% of the people voting chose, not 10 of registered voters, 10% OF THE PEOPLE WHO VOTED IN THAT ELECTION. To me that sounds like a perfect recipe to manipulate/control election outcomes that way. That is a problem and a reason the runoffs are necessary in nonpartisan races.

Having the municipal elections in November would increase participation and that is a great thing, but a lot of tricks get played in elections..like one candidate putting in 3rd, 4th, 5th...candidates to split the vote that would otherwise go to their opponent.

Keep the runoff, whether you move the election or not.

Posted on: 2015/11/5 3:59
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Re: J.C. Mayor Seeks To End Runoff Elections
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That is not true, yes there will be a well funded candidate back by the developers but he/she will have to prove himself/herself against an unknown. Throughout JC history, the runoffs have made a difference. This will definitely silence the voice of the independent. It is always the reformers who do such damage to the political process.

Posted on: 2015/11/5 3:13
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Re: J.C. Mayor Seeks To End Runoff Elections
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Quote:

Yvonne wrote:
Sorry, I prefer to old fashion way of candidates proving themselves, I do not prefer the new way of having developers picking the candidate for me.

Nothing about allowing runoffs changes that dynamic.

If developers want to throw money at candidates, a runoff won't stop them from doing that.

Posted on: 2015/11/5 3:01
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Re: J.C. Mayor Seeks To End Runoff Elections
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Sorry, I prefer to old fashion way of candidates proving themselves, I do not prefer the new way of having developers picking the candidate for me.

Posted on: 2015/11/5 2:49
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