Run-Off Elections and Why I Support Them

In light of the primary elections last Tuesday, I see an issue that needs addressed and that issue is a primary election which has three or more candidates running for the same office. We had several of those races last week, two of which had five people running for the same office! In one of those races the winner did not even get 30% of the vote, which means that 70% of the voters did not support the winning candidate. That race and others show me that we may need to start having run off elections in the state of Kansas if there are three or more candidates in a race and the winner does not get fifty percent of the vote.

We go through the run off process when we have to replace an elected official if they leave office for any reason and there are three or more candidates. Why do we not do it in the primaries? We had several races with three more candidates where the winner received over fifty percent of the vote and there is no doubt they had the support of the majority for the win. The races where the winner is declared with only thirty percent bother me. They bother me enough that I am writing a bill that will require a run off election be held within ten days of the official results of a primary election when there are three or more candidates running for the same office and the winner did not receive fifty percent of the vote. This may be an added expense to the county for the special election, but I feel it will be minimal, and by having it we get the candidate which the people have come together to support with their vote. I have no sour grapes over who won or lost last week in any of the races, but I do have strong reservations against declaring a winner when they receive less than than a third of the votes. Let me know what you think about it.

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commented 2014-08-11 22:52:54 -0500 · Flag
Awesome analysis sir. I support this wholeheartedly and also you for another term in office to get this much necessary reform passed. Oklahoma has a system Kansas can look at and assess by its own use how often it may be necessary in our own state.

Paid for by Mike Houser for State Representative - Rick Jessee, Treasurer.

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