Repeal of Ballot Measure 2, ranked-choice voting, moves out of House Judiciary Committee


The House Judiciary Committee voted to move House Bill 4 out of committee to its next committee of referral: Finance. The bill would repeal Ballot Measure 2 from 2020, a measure approved by voters to create a novel and untested voting scheme in Alaska that includes open primaries and ranked-choice voting general elections, a combination used in no other state.

Alaska has become a cheap way for liberal Outside interests to promulgate political changes since it is a very inexpensive media market. Alaskans for Better Elections, funded by some of the most effective liberal entities at work in politics today, was able to convince more than 50% of voters that the current system for electing people — one vote at a time — robbed them of choice. The ranked-choice proponents say voters should be allowed to rank their top choice, second choice, third choice in a system that requires machine counting, since the recalculation of the second and third choice votes is so time-consuming and prone to human error.

Rep. Ben Carpenter, a member of the committee, said that the measure was passed because of another element inserted by the Ballot Measure 2 proponents — the prohibition on “dark money.” Carpenter pointed out that the group Alaskans for Better Elections used the so-called dark money to scare people about the term “dark money,” because Alaskans are leery of Outsiders trying to influence elections. That scare tactic worked, he said, but now many Alaskans realize that they were duped into voting for Ballot Measure 2.

Rep. Sarah Vance of Homer, who chairs the committee, said in her sponsor statement for the bill: “The ballot measure that transformed Alaska’s election system in 2020 passed by a narrow margin of less than 1 percent. The campaign led Alaskans to believe the ballot measure would do away with ‘dark money’ only and that it would give them ‘more options’ in voting. Most Alaskan’s did not know that it would upend our way of voting that has always been one person equals one vote. Many voters have expressed buyer’s remorse since passage. In fact, recent polling shows that that majority of Alaskans strongly agree to repeal rank choice voting.”

A Dittman Research poll shows that 51% of voters in Alaska want to repeal Ballot Measure 2. 84% of Democrats want to keep ranked choice voting and 81% of Republicans want it repealed.

Besides Rep. Vance, co-sponsors of the bill include Reps. George Rauscher-Sutton, Kevin McCabe-Big Lake, and Frank Tomaszewski-Fairbanks, all Republicans.

The bill passed out of committee on a vote of 5-2, with the Democrats on the committee voting against passage. Democrats have been particular beneficiaries of Ballot Measure 2 and see it as a way to improve their chances in a state that is still conservative leaning.

Last May, the House State Affairs Committee, which was the first committee to hear the bill, passed the bill out of committee at the end of the legislative session. In that committee, it was also the Democrat, Rep. Andi Story of Juneau, who voted against moving the bill.

At the same time the repeal is working its way through the Legislature, a citizen group is working to repeal ranked-choice voting. Alaskans for Honest Elections turned in signatures on a petition to have the question put to voters during either the primary or, more likely, the general election later this year. Alaskans for Honest Elections has been hounded by the Outside-funded Alaskans for Better Elections, which is fighting to retain the new system that ushered in Democrat Rep. Mary Peltola in 2022’s election cycle, and also helped Sen. Lisa Murkowski by taking away the Republican primary election, which she would not have been able to win, according to polling.

If HB 4 passes both bodies — and it is unlikely to be heard in the Democrat-dominated Senate majority — voters would not face the question on the ballot and voting would return to the way it was done before 2022.


  1. When this measure is put on the ballot please make the wording more understandable. This way of voting is STUPID and is used to rigged the ballot box towards people who should not be in office.

  2. Research shows that 1 out of every 8 rural- Alaska ballots was rejected due in part to this complicated RCV system. This system is too complicated for many. We don’t need to disenfranchise voters like this. RCV is a significant mistake. Lets end it.

    • M, that is due in small part. The vast majority were rejected for not having signatures–something that was revoked in 2020 and reinstated in 2022. See: ‘

      And how is ranking your favorites too complicated? Can you rank your top three favorite ice cream flavors? Your favorite coffee shops? Your favorite blogs? We all rank our choices/preferences daily and to apply that to voting isn’t any more challenging as a process.

    • RCV isn’t a very good voting method. Use approval, score or STAR voting, or perhaps a better ranking method like a Condorcet method. Whatever you do, don’t pull those filthy party primaries out of the trash can, dust them off, and attempt to use them again! The whole country needs to abolish those awful things.

      • Sorry but can you explain to me, take as long as you need, but can you explain why a card carrying member of the Republican party should have any say whatsoever in who the Democrats nominate for an office? or vice versa?
        There is no justification for open primaries. None whatsoever.
        If you are not a registered member of the party, you do not get a vote in who the party picks to represent them in the general election.

        • Suppose the party primaries are abolished, and no first-round election (a.k.a. nonpartisan open primary) is held at all. We just go with a single election on November election day. Parties can hold a caucus or convention or whatever they want to nominate candidates prior to November. Now you explain to me how the heck any Democrat is deciding the nominee for Republicans or vise-versa under that system? The first-round election of the top-4 two-round system is NOT a nominating process.

          • I could support that.
            Open primaries, not a chance, but no primaries, sure.
            As to a dem deciding who the republicans nominate, what, exactly do you think happens in open primaries? Are you new to AK? Did you forget how, prior to BM2, a person could request whatever primary ballot they wanted? Do you really think no Republicans chose the Dem primary ballot to cast a vote for the weakest candidate?
            And, that absolute cluster fu…. errr… fudge that BM2 foisted upon us. Do not tell me for a second the Democrats did not vote en masse for Murkowski. in other words, deciding who the Republicans had on the ballot in November.
            Surely you are not that clueless.

        • Re: “Do not tell me for a second the Democrats did not vote en masse for Murkowski. in other words, deciding who the Republicans had on the ballot in November.”

          If we assume most Democrats did vote for Murkowski in the NOP (many of those voting for Murkowski probably were either registered R or unaffiliated, too), they didn’t pick Murkowski for you or for Republicans. They picked her for themselves which they have every right to do.

          In a typical party primary, their choice of Murkowski would have also removed Tshibaka from the ballot, or perhaps forced Kelly to run without her name on the ballot, but a NOP doesn’t behave that way. Their choosing of Lisa doesn’t prevent you from having Kelly. So I don’t understand why you are angry. What have you lost? In what way have you been harmed?

      • No voting system is or can be perfect. RCV is unique among voting systems in that a vote for your 2nd or lower choice cannot hurt your 1st choice. (For election geeks, this is called the “later no harm” property).

        I’d be in favor of eliminating primaries completely. And there’s no reason parties should not be able to endorse whoever they want (and ballots should be able to show that). And if more than one candidate who associate themselves with a party are on the ballot, voters who want to be sure someone from that party wins should use all their rankings on candidates from that party, and the RCV elimination rounds will consolidate their votes to the most popular person from that party. This could take the place of partisan primaries without hurting the parties.

        The top four open primary should not be confused with RCV in general.

        • Re: “…there’s no reason parties should not be able to endorse whoever they want…”


          “…candidate who associate themselves with a party…”

          These two statements are a bit of a contradiction, and highlight a serious flaw of these two-round systems. Candidates must not be permitted to associate themselves with a party without authorization from the party. In order for a party to have freedom to endorse candidates, the party must have control over the party name. This is very easy fix, but for some reason, no bill to fix it has been submitted despite many rank and file party members asking for it.

          Re: “…voters who want to be sure someone from that party wins should use all their rankings on candidates from that party,…”

          This strategy failed in the August 2022 US House special election. All those wanting a Republican to win should have not only ranked all Republicans, but more specifically, ranked Begich first. RCV (IRV) may avoid the later no harm criterion, but it suffers from favorite betrayal.

          • “This strategy failed in the August 2022 US House special election. All those wanting a Republican to win should have not only ranked all Republicans, but more specifically, ranked Begich first. ”

            More than 15000 people who voted for Begich first had Peltola as their 2nd choice. More than 11000 bullet voted (had no 2nd choice). Had about 22000 of those voters put the other Republican as their 2nd choice, that candidate would have won. So my point as stated stands.

            As for favorite betrayal, there are dozens of criteria which all sound good, and no election system satisfies them all. I think “later no harm” is important because if it is violated, people will figure that out and tend to bullet vote. Trying to game out favorite betrayal requires a degree of omniscience which seems pretty unlikely.

          • To correct myself, I neglected the 27,053 voters whose votes for Begich were transferred to the other R. If 2621 of the Begich votes that put Peltola second had been for the other R instead, they would have won. Or if 5642 of the bullet voters had done the same thing they also would have won. Or some combination.

    • If you voted at all, how was it nullified? One person, one vote based on their ranked preference. This should delight folks when there is ballot splitting (Begich and Palin)–it’s a fantastic chance to choose your preferred and your backup candidates. Republicans put Petola in office as much as Democrats and since the Alaska GOP can’t come to terms with that, they’re now telling you it’s a failure of RCV. Crying shame that these folks want to strip choice from you.

      • Bill we don’t need any changes to voting.
        Ranked choice is like going to Vegas and pulling the handle you never know what you will get.
        No to ranked choice mess.

      • It is not one person one vote.
        It is one person, up to four votes per office.
        Want to have some kind of run off in the event a candidate does not get 50%+ of the vote, sure, do it between the top two candidates and it happens two weeks (or more) later.
        Otherwise, it is simply screwing people out of their ability to chose a candidate. See, the Anchorage muni has a run off system, and more than once, my preferred candidate did not make it to the top two, so I had an opportunity to re-evaluate who I liked out of the remaining field. RCV takes that opportunity away from me.

  3. If the current Senators and Representatives Really knew what was good for themselves, they’ll repeal rank choice voting. I think they know. But! Like leaders in the past these guys aren’t planning to retiring and staying on Alaska. Our leaders came here for money, not to stay, so they don’t care about the filthy mess they made here, they don’t have to live here.

  4. RCV gave Murkowski another term. That’s all that mattered. Makes me wonder what she’ll come up with in her next go-round.

    • It was the abolishment of party primaries that allowed Lisa to win, or more easily win, not the use of RCV. Lisa was the most preferred candidate, so she should have won. A dysfunctional primary system should not allow a less preferred candidate to be elected.

      • Brian, it was a flat out rigged system that allowed Murkowski and Peltola to win. Quit spewing your lies and trying to twist the truths. Bring back the closed primary and hand ballots!

        • CA and WA did not use RCV to kill primaries. Likewise, AK could have abolished primaries without using any alternative voting method, or used approval voting or score voting or perhaps some other version of a ranking method.

      • No, the ballots are counted the same number of times. If you voted for anyone who passes an elimination round, you vote gets counted for the same candidate on the next round. If you voted for the last place candidate who gets eliminated, your vote is transferred to your next favorite candidate who is still in the race. Only if you didn’t mark other preferences or all your preferences have already been eliminated does your vote stop counting. Your vote only counts for one candidate at a time, once per round, but they all count.

        • Really?
          NW Corner, tell everyone here that you are clueless, without actually saying you are clueless. Oh…. too late you already did.
          It is not the person who voted for the candidate with the most votes in the first round that is getting two or more votes. in fact, the person voting for the leader should be outraged that people who did not vote the same way get their second, or third choice counted as RCV works its way through the system.
          Seriously, do you really think that is what I meant?

          • That’s not what I thought you meant, and also not what I said.

            You seem to think that if someone’s first choice turns out to be the least popular candidate, that their opinion should no longer matter. You’re free to think that, but I disagree. It depends on what you believe the purpose of voting is.

            I just think it is really misleading to say some people get more votes than others. Besides exhausted ballots, everyone’s vote counts on every round. Some votes change between rounds and some don’t. I don’t know why it is so offensive that if you voted for the loser your vote changes to your next preference. If it were a real series of runoffs, the person who voted for the loser would get to change their vote to someone else. Yes, it is true that in this system the person who voted for candidates who passed a round would not be able to change their vote between rounds. But since the counting is all happening at once, the voter should be able to rank their preferences up front. I understand you have a problem with that but I don’t think it is a matter of some people having more votes than others.

        • And… you again demonstrate that you either did not read what I wrote, or you are not getting it.
          One vote means exactly that. One vote. If there is any kind of a run off, the only way to ensure the voter has the opportunity to make their choice, is to have a second run off election. Instant run off is some people get to vote as often as possible before they get a winner, while others only vote once. Sugar coating it by saying the ballot is counted again is not the point. Never was, and your responding to something that is not the point is wrong.
          Want a run off election, OK. It needs to be held at a different date, with the opportunity for all voters to make a decision between the two remaining candidates. Anything less is one person, more than one vote.

          • You said “some ballots are counted up to four times.”

            I say, all ballots except those that were exhausted (because of not ranking all the candidates) are counted exactly the same number of times.

  5. Unless the legislature is given a political enema, this will never pass.
    Thanks again, afternoon drive radio host.

    • Are you a fed? You always attack your own side and our efforts like a troll or a fed trying to cause an insurrection.

      • Are you a patient at API? Your rants always are just this side of psychotic.

        Plus, your knowledge of our system is on par with a 4th grader.

        • To be fair, the vast majority of the voting public has a knowledge of our system that is on par with a 4th grader.

  6. Everything about RCV was carefully crafted, financed, hatched by the DNC, and conceived in deception. RCV has nothing to do with the “Will of the People”. It’s supporters could care less about individual rights, state rights, our Republic, or our Constitution. They only care about the theft of power, and they only care about results. They do not care about the truth because the truth gets in the way of the results they want. Just look at the latest commentary on ADN about RCV, and this becomes blatantly obvious. Meanwhile I’m hopeful Rep. Sarah Vance can make progress on rescinding RCV, otherwise the control of our state will fall into the hands of these godless, lawless, nihilist with dreams of their Neo-Marxist utopia. Suzanne and John, I know you both know Rep. Vance well. You have watched Sarah rise from a home schooling stay at home mom, to the voice of the Homer City recall, followed by her painful failed run for Homer City Council, her epic take down of Rep. Paul Seaton – a legislator with 16 years in Juneau, to her present position as the chair of the powerful House Judiciary Committee, in 7 short years. The two of you have been there for Rep. Vance since the very beginning, and MRA has played an important role in that success. Now the question is, is it time for her to to plan a run for the governorship for the Great State of Alaska? Myself, I know Rep. Vance has the foundation, leadership, and now I believe the skills under her belt to be a great governor. And how I would look forward to that celebration in the Chart Room some day, just like last time.

  7. We are indeed an inexpensive state to conduct electoral experiments on, and yet they still have found a way to use our tax dollars to oppress our votes in reconsidering this measure. They better do a better job paying their opinion callers or they won’t have them. Someone real might get heard.

  8. The voters voted it in, the voters should vote it out. Put it on the ballot. Simple yes or no: “Do you want to keep RCV or not?”

    • I agree, the legislature should not be reversing a vote of the peop0le. Whether anyone likes RCV or not, this would be a dangerous precedent. Let the voters decide, not the Juneau ellite.

      • Our representatives form of government has checks and balances, one of those is that the legislature can vote to replace a ballot measure two years after it took effect. If you don’t like that specific check and balance then you’d need to rewrite the State Constitution.

        • Yes, I know that they CAN do that, but I would think that they would not. If I were a legislator, I don’t think that I could ever vote to reverse a ballot measure, no matter how much I might hate it. But that’s just me.

      • The legislature has overridden the will of the people regularly throughout history. Happens so often, it is not even newsworthy anymore.
        The precedent is already set. Set in stone actually.

    • Maybe I missed something, but isn’t the “nonpartisan open primaries” part, or stating it another way, the abolishment of party primaries part of the system, also going to be discarded along with RCV? If they were deciding only on the RCV part, that seems better to me. I think people would be better off if they discarded the RCV, but kept the two-round system without primaries. Approval or score voting could be used, or use plurality with a top-two, although, I don’t agree with use of a top-two system unless first-round is held in mid-October.

    • Maybe the voters voted it in.
      It was a bit weird how it was losing, right up to the last day counting absentee ballots. Suddenly there was a surge sufficient to get it over the finish line. It was almost as if every single absentee ballot counted on that last day wanted RCV. Not impossible, not proof of any cheating, but statistically odd enough that it warrants investigation.
      But… none is forthcoming because… reasons.

  9. RCV is inherently unfair, and it cannot represent the actual will of the voters.
    There is only one write in candidate line for each office.
    What if I do not want any of the four that made it through the jungle primary, but want to write in four other candidates? Why should I be denied the ability to write in up to four candidates?
    Under the old (more reliable and more fair system) I got only one vote for each office. If I chose to write in a candidate, it is clear and obvious that was my one vote. But, under the unfair, and voter suppressing, RCV, I can only write in one candidate for each office.
    I have been denied my ability to rank the candidates I choose.

    • Write-in candidates have to be certified or the vote, or “rank” in this case, is rejected. So while you can write-in anyone you want it won’t count unless the write-in candidate has been certified. Also there needs to be a certain percentage of write-ins before the write-ins are even counted, I’m not sure what the percentage is but if memory serves it’s fairly substantial. As I recall none of that wasn’t changed by rank voting, but incorporated into the rankness.

      • Still, what of there are a handful of write in candidates?
        I lost my ability to write in more than one.
        If I do not have the availability to rank every possible write in, my vote is suppressed.

        • According to your example, there could be possibly thirty, forty rankings allowed, or an unlimited number. This proves how dumb it is to allow write-ins in the November runoff, or second-round.

          Write-in candidates had their chance in the first round. Is your vote not being suppressed in this first-round election if you are only able to vote for one of them? Why should the write-in candidate be able to skip the first-round (“primary”), while others are eliminated from it? Why allow the write-in in November to compete against four candidates when non-write-ins had to compete against 47 candidates? There should be no write-in candidates at all in the November runoff.

          • None of what you are referring to as dumb would be a factor without RCV.
            RCV is the real dumb thing.
            And, while you say write in candidates had their chance in the primaries (I will not refer to them as the first round), I seem to remember a Senator winning on a write in vote. Turns out eliminating write ins in the General election would have gone against the will of the people.

    • Yea, it does seem to be really dumb for them to allow a right-in in the top-four runoff. The write-in option should be available in the first-round election, and if that write-in is in the top four, he or she will be one of four to advance to the runoff and be allowed to have their name on the ballot.

        • It certainly is wrong from a fairness sense to allow a candidate to skip the first round election while everyone else has to compete against 47 candidates. A non-RCV election as was done in the past has only a single-round for the general. The new system is a two-round system general election that begins in August. Write-in candidates should be able to enter the election at the beginning, in August, not after the first-round has already been held. The first-round election is NOT a party primary.

    • It’s a decent point, even if it would rarely make any difference, but it is something that could be fixed. Write-in candidates could be one per rank and treated like any other candidate. That’s not a problem with RCV, but with the particular way it is implemented in Alaska.

  10. Straight ballot voting in Alaska. One vote, not ranked, biased, nothing else. Vote your choice. Be done with it! Ranked choice us suicide for Alaska, as the last election shows. Peltola, Murkowski – holy smokes. You people out there haven’t a damn clue. Murkowski got yet another ride, she’s useless. Petorla – petrol, whatever, is a democrat that has voted right down the party line and couldn’t count to ten if she could see all ten fingers and toes. Useless!!!! Ranked Choice caused that. Knock it off Alaska. Problem is the couple thousand Democrat outsiders that infiltrated Anchorage and it’s ASSembly. The current Assembly is the most useless one in the cities history . . . . Dating to good ole Berkoshitz . . . . loser. There’s more, but I gotta give the idiots time to digest this?!

  11. Good. The sooner we flush this turd, the better. There’s no reason why an election should be this complicated. Return to the days when an election was decided and announced in 24 hours. Only communists and democrats would think this makes sense. The very fact that the mob that pushed this had to lie in the advertisements leading up to the voting on this initiative tells you all you need to know about the legitimacy of this.

  12. Rank voting is stupid and un-American, Ballot Measure 2 clearly violated the single subject rule for proposed bills…but it’s also how our next election will go regardless of this bill or the initiative to overturn it. If conservatives and right leaning folks insist upon not understanding how rank voting works then rank voting will be with us for the foreseeable future.

    Splitting the vote isn’t a thing in rank voting, unless you allow it to be.
    If you don’t want to rank a candidate, don’t rank them.
    If you want a leftwing Democrat elected to office, then rank only one person.
    If you want anyone but a leftwing Democrat, then rank everyone who isn’t a leftwing Democrat.

    • I am still very perplexed as to why is was not struck down on the basis that it obviously violated the single subject rule.

      Please don’t assume that a ranking system is an approval system. It only indicates relative preferences, not support or lack of support. You should rank all the candidates.

      • No, you shouldn’t rank anyone who you don’t want to give your vote to. If you rank someone you dislike in 4th position and your first 3 choices are knocked out, your vote will go to that 4th position candidate. If you don’t like them at all you shouldn’t rank them.

        • Please think that through. If you only rank three and leave the last ranking off, it’s really the same thing as ranking all four candidates.

          Don’t confuse ranking a candidate with showing approval of or support for that candidate. In no way can vote counters determine that the absence of a candidate in your ranking list means you don’t support that candidate. Ranking any candidate does not “support” a candidate. Always rank all of the candidates, or perhaps all but your least favorite (last) candidate, otherwise you are just reducing your own political power and influence.

          • “Please think that through. If you only rank three and leave the last ranking off, it’s really the same thing as ranking all four candidates.”

            OK. In my example I should not have chosen the 4th position in a case where the size of the field is 4. In that case I agree. I also agree that if you have any preference at all between even candidates you don’t like much, it makes sense to rank all but the last.

            If you don’t have a preference between candidates you don’t like, there’s no reason to give any of them any more of a “mandate” by ranking them though.

            I don’t think we’re really disagreeing by much on this.

  13. HB4 makes the same mistake that the ballot initiative backers are making. They are taking what should be a 3-sentence piece of legislation and turn it into a 33-page POS. You can do a lot of mischief in 33 pages, something the RCV backers did very well.

    Which 3 sentences should a repeal be?

    1. Prop 2 is repealed as of this date (insert date).
    2. State election law reverts to that of Nov 1, 2020.
    3. This law goes into effect upon signature of the Governor.

    Still, this is better than RCV, though not nearly as clean as a straight repeal and should pass. Cheers –

  14. As per the disrespected in Alaska US Constitution: one man; one vote. Try that once if you can. It’s hard I know to secure and defend the US Constitution in this racially discriminatory state! You all hate the US Constitution what little of it you ever thought you knew.

  15. RCV was the final nail in the scheme to disinfranchise the people of their right to control their state government. I disagree voters were convinced to pass RCV, because this assumes voters themselves determine election outcomes. The Alaska Division of Elections maintains the dirtiest voter registration in the US as it is used as an effective tool to manipulate election and ballot initiative results. The pre determined results are all that matter. The voting process narrative is presented as a nail biting drama with unknown final results, as though the results depend on the public’s collective mood and voter turnout. With an inventory of 7% surplus voter registrations, the division of elections can produce a near guaranteed result for which virtually any election or initiative can be passed or defeated.

    • There is a large dose of Hanlon’s Razor in this.

      Never, ever underestimate the ability of people to act stupidly. Especially in large numbers.

  16. RCV is an all around bad idea but the worst aspect of it is that it forces us to use machines to tabulate the vote…machines that we are apparently not allowed to examine to ensure that the votes are accurately counted. I’m out of practice on my coding skills but I could sit down and in about an hour write simple code that would tabulate your ballot however I wanted it to, adding votes to candidates you didn’t pick and, for a nice bonus, spit out a receipt for you to take home that would show you that your vote was accurately counted while in the background it wasn’t. That kind of code is simple and as long as we’re not allowed to examine it…undetectable. That’s how easy it is to steal an election as long as you control the machines.

  17. RCV was a plot by leftists and Dark Money to take over Alaska’s elections. It was used to save Murkowski’s seat and place Peltola in congress to be a blank check puppet for the lefts plot to continue the erosion of the U.S. Constitution. Not only does it cheat the voters of their vote, but it also uses machines to do it. If anyone that is paying attention does not believe the machines are manipulating vote totals, you need to wake up. Just check out the current case in Georgia, where University of Michigan Professor of Computer Science and Engineering J. Alex Halderman testified in front of Judge Amy Totenberg’s courtroom in the Culling vs. Raffensperger lawsuit on the insecure Dominion voting machines used in Georgia elections since 2020. Machines are a big problem nationwide because they are all hackable and can be manipulated remotely with a cell phone or laptop. It just takes the right software and pre-programed algorithms. So, why is Dunleavy and our Attorney General not outlawing these in Alaska? Mr. Halderman proved in court; how easy it is to alter the election results. The public has no idea what is being pre-programmed into the machines and neither does the City Officials.


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