Group believes changes to primary could force Seattle leaders to ‘start listening to voters’

Dec 11, 2021, 8:07 AM

voter, approval voting...

A voter hands off her ballot as King County Elections drivers collect ballots from a ballot drop box outside Seattle Community College on Nov. 3, 2020, in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Karen Ducey/Getty Images)

(Photo by Karen Ducey/Getty Images)

Could the way Seattle votes in primary elections go through a facelift sometime in the near future? Seattle Approves Co-Founder Logan Bowers hopes so, detailing his group’s push for what’s known as “approval voting” in a recent interview with KTTH’s Jason Rantz Show.

With deadlines looming, King County hits pause on push for ranked choice voting

In a standard Seattle primary, voters select one candidate in each race. Approval voting would allow someone to vote for as many candidates as they want, which Bowers says makes for a system that better represents what people actually want in any given election.

“It’s actually better at getting candidates that represent you by picking those as winners, and so you end up kind of in an even better spot,” he posited.

Bowers cites the recent Seattle city attorney election as an example of where approval voting might have represented a better system, where 12-year incumbent Pete Holmes failed to make it out of the primary, leaving Republican Ann Davison and abolitionist Nicole Thomas-Kennedy as the final two candidates in the general election.

“We had [incumbent] Pete Holmes, Nicole Thomas-Kennedy on the far left, and then Ann Davison, a challenger from Pete Holmes’ right in the primary election,” he described. “The system we have today eliminated four-term incumbent Pete Holmes and probably selected the far left Nicole Thomas-Kennedy in his place — under approval voting, we likely would have had a Davison/Holmes race instead of a Davison/Thomas-Kennedy race.”

Bowers believes that approval voting could also force city councilmembers to appeal to a wider base of voters, particularly in District 3, where Kshama Sawant has consistently drawn the ire of moderates and conservatives alike.

King County district forges ahead on smartphone voting

“The challenge with Councilmember Sawant and other councilmembers is they can win their primary elections with 25% of the vote, maybe 30%,” he pointed out. “They only need a tiny base in the city to get through the primary election.”

“Under approval voting, that just doesn’t cut it anymore,” he added. “When you can get support from multiple constituencies, you might need need 60% approval to clear a primary. What that means for Councilmember Sawant and other councilmembers is they better start listening to every last group of voters, and they better start delivering for every last group of voters.”

You can learn more about approval voting at the Seattle Approves website at this link.

Listen to the Jason Rantz Show weekday afternoons from 3 – 6 p.m. on KTTH 770 AM (or HD Radio 97.3 FM HD-Channel 3). Subscribe to the podcast here.

Jason Rantz on AM 770 KTTH
  • listen to jason rantzTune in to AM 770 KTTH weekdays at 3-7pm toThe Jason Rantz Show.

Jason Rantz Show

Jason Rantz

Photo: The recent announcement of the Seattle Public Library closures mean branches will be dark on...

Jason Rantz

Rantz: Homeless addicts the real reason for Seattle Public Library closures

What's really behind the Seattle Public Library closures? Homeless drug addicts causing security issues. But media blames "staffing."

9 hours ago

Photo: In this photo taken Friday, Feb. 12, 2016, a box of Cosmic Crisp apples is shown at Washingt...

Jason Rantz

Rantz: Let me ruin WSU’s ‘Name the apple’ contest for you

Washington State University wants you coming up with a name for a new apple. You probably think it's cute and fun. Let me ruin it for you.

3 days ago

Photo: A dance troupe says it was unwelcome at an event after wearing American flag shirts. They sa...

Jason Rantz

Rantz: Dance team told American flag shirt made some feel ‘triggered and unsafe’ in Seattle

A dance troop says it was unwelcome at an event after wearing American flag shirts. They say Seattle dance guests felt "triggered and unsafe."

4 days ago

Seattle Lululemon...

Jason Rantz

Rantz: Seattle Lululemon latest closure as downtown struggles to recover from Democrat policies

The Seattle Lululemon location is the latest retailer to call it quits downtown. Why won't Democrats admit there's a problem?

4 days ago

Photo: Pastor Russell Johnson said the Seattle Times canceled an $18,500 Easter Sunday ad campaign ...

Jason Rantz

Rantz: Seattle Times cancels $18k ad buy because it promoted church, pastor says

Pastor Russell Johnson said the Seattle Times canceled an $18,500 Easter Sunday ad campaign two days before it was supposed to run.

6 days ago

Image: A Puyallup man was nearly ran over when he confronted a thief trying to steal his truck....

Julia Dallas

Rantz exclusive: Puyallup man may have saved teen after nearly being run over stopping theft

What would you do if you saw someone trying to steal your car? One Puyallup man jumped into action last week.

6 days ago

Group believes changes to primary could force Seattle leaders to ‘start listening to voters’