Speaking of IRV
My post on voting for Best Picture (and the ensuing comments) talked quite a bit about IRV (instant run-off voting). Georgia is presenting a case where IRV might solve a problem (and is, apparently, at least being discussed).
Via Peach Pundit: Finding Alternatives to Runoff Elections Just Got More Urgent
One of the most disruptive features of the 2014 election cycle was a result of a court ruling that in order to allow overseas soldiers enough time to vote in a runoff election, absentee ballots would need to be provided 45 days prior to election day. Following the judge’s ruling, the legislature passed House Bill 310, which moved the primary election to late May and the runoff election to late July. Had the general election for the Senate gone to a runoff, that would have been held in early January. But election dates were not the only things to change. Election qualifying was moved up to early March, and legislators sped through the 2014 session, even “meeting” when the Capitol was closed due to snow and ice, in order to be able to raise money and campaign as early as possible.
While I am all for making sure all voters get the chance to cast their ballots, a 45 day gap between rounds is pretty extreme (and will likely repress turnout for the second round, creating other distortions in the process). Indeed, in general, this ruling is clearly creating a variety of election administration issues for the state of Georgia.
An attempt has been made to call a committee to study alternatives, including IRV. This is nothing more than a proposal to discuss proposals at this point and I have no idea as to the probability that the discussion will even take place.
In general, however, this situation strikes me as another piece of evidence as to the clunky nature of elections processes in the US.