STAR VOTING LAUNCHES 2020 CAMPAIGNS TO REFORM EUGENE AND LANE COUNTY ELECTIONS
With support from progressives, conservatives, and election experts, the groundbreaking new voting system would level the playing field, fight polarization, and ensure every citizen’s vote carries equal power. If adopted, Eugene would make history as the first city in the nation to use STAR Voting in a public election.
Eugene, Ore., Aug. 22, 2019 – The Equal Vote Coalition has officially launched twin campaigns in Eugene and Lane County to bring STAR Voting to the 2020 ballot. If passed, Eugene, would become the first city in the nation to enact the pioneering voting reform, with Lane County following close behind.
STAR Voting petitioners are currently canvassing the streets of Eugene with the goal of collecting 11,000 signatures in advance of the October 14 deadline. If successful, STAR Voting will be included on the Eugene ballot for the May 2020 Primary Election, as well as the Lane County ballot for the November 2020 Presidential Election.
“The idea is that voters should be free to vote their conscience, our votes should always make a difference, and the candidate who best represents the will of the people should actually win,” says STAR Voting Campaign Manager Sara Wolk. “This is a simple reform that has the potential to get to the root of many of the problems driving political dysfunction, while at the same time combatting polarization, empowering candidates to run more positive campaigns, and giving us better accountability in the process.”
Adopting STAR Voting would eliminate the need for the expensive and low-turnout primary election. Instead, voters would participate in a single November election to decide local non-partisan races, including Eugene Mayor and City Council and Lane County Commissioners.
In STAR voting, voters score each candidate from zero up to five stars. The two highest scoring candidates then advance to an automatic runoff. If your favorite can’t win, your vote automatically transfers to the finalist you scored higher. The finalist preferred by the majority wins.
The 5-star scoring system allows voters to show how much or how little they support the candidates. The automatic runoff takes it further, eliminating destructive incentives in our current system to strategically vote for the lesser of two evils.
“With the current system, the incentive is always to vote for the frontrunner on your side who you think can win, but—spoiler alert—that’s almost always the candidate who’s raised the most money,” said Chief Petitioner Mark Frohnmayer. “By eliminating vote splitting and the ‘Spoiler Effect,’ STAR Voting combats the effect of big money in politics, and has the potential to end the partisan gridlock that plagues American politics today.”
Following a statewide movement, STAR Voting first appeared on the ballot in the 2018 election in Lane County. With a largely volunteer-driven, underfunded campaign, STAR Voting nearly passed with 47.6% of the vote, representing nearly 75,000 people voting in support.
“Every precinct where we were able to get out into the community to get voters educated on the issue, and every precinct where we put up even a single lawn sign, voted yes on STAR Voting," said Wolk. “The results of the 2018 election proved that the more voters knew about STAR Voting, the more likely they were to vote in favor of it. With such incredible momentum and community support, we are confident Eugene and Lane County will make history in 2020.”
To use STAR Voting in your own election or decision-making process, create your own ballot at Star.vote
To volunteer or sign up for updates, email [email protected]
To donate, please visit starvoting.us/donate
To learn more, please visit Starvoting.us
Sara Wolk: 971-222-9364
Johnathan Miller: (415) 868-5660