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Kalamazoo Campaign


On November 7, 2023, over 70% of Kalamazoo voters voted to add Ranked Choice Voting to Kalamazoo’s city charter!

Let's Bring Ranked Choice Voting to K'zoo

The citizens of Michigan opened up their democracy by establishing an independent redistricting commission for our State and expanding voting rights.

Now, Rank MI Vote is building upon this momentum by bringing Ranked Choice Voting (RCV) to Michigan. We’ve submitted over 3,200 signatures to appear on this November’s ballot to allow the citizens of Kalamazoo to choose RCV as their preferred voting method for local elections.

We’re asking Kalamazoo voters to vote “YES” on the November 2023 Kalamazoo city charter amendment to bring Ranked Choice Voting to Kalamazoo!

We’re also looking for groups to speak to and volunteers to help us get out the vote. At events and door to door, we need your help! We’re looking to get the word out about the upcoming vote at events and in neighborhoods throughout Kalamazoo. If you’d like to join us or know of a group we should present to, email us below!

Kalamazoo campaign team

“YES” Vote Endorsements

"Ranked Choice Voting is widely accepted as another critical pillar of democracy reform. It puts more power in the hands of voters while making politicians be more responsive and accountable to their constituents. It incentivizes politicians toward campaigning and governing focused on finding solutions that best serve our communities. I wholeheartedly endorse this important effort."

Katie FaheyFounder, Voters Not Politicians

"Democracy means rule by the people. Ranked Choice Voting sets up a fairer system for the people's voices to be heard."

Don CooneyVice Mayor

"I’m a big supporter of Ranked Choice Voting. I feel this system will hold politicians accountable to the people because politicians work and represent all the people of The City of Kalamazoo."

Charlie ParkerLifelong Northside Resident

"Ranked Choice Voting makes elections fairer."

Jack UrbanRetired City Commissioner

"Ranked Choice Voting will be great in Kalamazoo because it's a less binary way of voting and should promote more diversity."

Matt SmithKalamazoo Public Library Librarian

"I fully support this change to our elections and I encourage every voter in Kalamazoo to approve Ranked Choice Voting."

Sharon FerraroRetired Historic Preservation Coordinator

"Ranked Choice Voting is a win for everyone. Democrats, Republicans, Greens, Libertarians, and Independents can vote with confidence knowing that only the candidate with a majority of the support will win the election."

Chris GlasserKalamazoo Eastside Neighborhood Association President

"In Ranked Choice Voting, I can vote first for the candidate that represents my voice the best."

Pat HallSgt. Ret. KDPS
Ranked Choice ballot example

What is Ranked Choice Voting

Ranked Choice Voting (“RCV”) ensures that candidates with the best ideas, not the biggest bank accounts – have a fair shot at running and winning.

In most elections today, you pick one candidate. With Ranked Choice Voting, you can rank candidates in the order you prefer them — 1st choice, 2nd choice, 3rd choice, and so on. If your 1st choice can’t win, your vote instantly counts toward your backup choice.

RCV is a simple, fair, and easy way to enable more voices and provide more choices for Michigan voters.
RCV ensures the winning candidate has majority (more than 50%) support and that similar candidates can’t split the vote or “spoil” the election.
Instead of picking just one candidate, RCV allows you to rank any or even all the candidates on your ballot — ensuring every vote matters.

How It Works

In Ranked Choice Voting (RCV), voters rank as many candidates as they want in order of preference. This improved voting method gives voters more freedom, more expression, and more power. Instead of picking just one candidate, a voter has the option to rank their candidates in order of preference — 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and so on.

RCV is a simple change to the ballot that enables a better voter experience, better campaigns, and ultimately, better government.

When there’s a single winner in a race, runoffs are instantly run — by removing the candidate with the fewest votes and looking at that candidates voters’ next choice, and so on — until a candidate receives over 50% of voters’ support. Here’s a video that explains the process!

When there are multiple winners in a race, for example 3 seats on a commission, runoffs are instantly run — by removing the candidate with the fewest votes and looking at that candidates voters’ next choice, and so on — until there are desired number of winners. Here’s a video that explains the process!

How to Win Under Ranked Choice Voting

Ballots are counted in “instant runoff rounds” where contestants receiving the fewest top-choices are eliminated and their supporters’ ballots are then counted toward the next choice indicated on each.

This process “consolidates” the voting power of like-minded voters, no matter how many candidates are running, rather than seeing the strength of their votes diluted and divided between multiple similar candidates. It means no more “spoiler problem”, so more candidates with a variety of backgrounds or ideas can run without worrying about distorting the outcome of the election.

These rounds repeat until one candidate has the support of more than half of the voters. Because winning requires a broad majority of support, candidates need to earn their opponents’ supporters’ 2nd and 3rd choice votes on the ballot. This encourages them to find common ground and talk about the substance of issues, rather than mudslinging — which alienates voters.

Why It Matters

People are fed up with toxic politics and unresponsive, gridlocked government dominated by powerful special interests. Grassroots leaders across the country are organizing to solve the source of the problem — our flawed election system.

Our current “pick-one” plurality election system punishes voters with “wasting their vote” if they choose their actual favorite and don’t use their ballot to support a “front-runner” candidate or one from the two major parties. It lets unpopular politicians win by allowing candidates to be elected even when the majority of voters oppose them. This system, known as “first-past-the-post” voting, makes elections toxic by incentivizing candidates to beat down their opponents and exaggerate differences, missing opportunities to reinforce areas of agreement that unify the electorate and create consensus for getting important things done after the election.


Keep up to date with the latest RCV news in Michigan, including our efforts to place RCV on ballots through campaigns we’re organizing.


Do you share our passion for RCV? Do you have a couple hours here and there to help? We have a variety of opportunities for contribution.


Order a t-shirt, hat, button, or mask to help spread the word. Plus, a portion of your purchase will automatically be donated to Rank MI Vote!


We’re always extremely grateful for any monetary donations. It helps us create awareness materials, maintain our website, and host events.