Ranked choice voting for fair elections
The political conditions and importance of Seminole County have changed drastically in the last several years, and an improved voting system that elects candidates most preferred by the people is needed. Had there been ranked choice voting (RCV), the following scenarios wouldn't occur.
In 2018, Katrina Shadix was running for Seminole County commissioner. In her race, she lost, receiving 48.54% of the vote to Commissioner Zembower's 48.75%, while a third-party candidate received 2.71% of the vote. With RCV, at least 50% of the votes are needed to win and if a candidate has less than 50% of the vote, the lowest vote-getter has their votes distributed to the voters' second choice. This would've been the solution to the spoiler effect in 2018.
In the upcoming 2020 Seminole County tax collector race, Lynn "Moira" Dictor is set to campaign against J.R. Kroll. Briefly, Daniel Day, an independent candidate with ties to former Tax Collector Joel Greenberg, filed to run as "Dani Mora Day." Although he dropped out, this could've caused confused for voters who weren't sure who the real "Mo(i)ra" was. RCV provides the voter the opportunity to cast their vote for either one as a second choice without fear of their vote being wasted.
There's a nonpartisan and not-for-profit organization that's working toward giving voters a voice, called Rank My Vote Florida (rankmyvoteflorida.org). They're working on bringing ranked choice voting to Florida, and I support this work in the fight for fair elections and I encourage others to join the fight.
– Rob Martin, Deltona
LGBTQ+ blood donors
Re: "Orlando Congresswoman Val Demings introduces bill to allow LGBTQ+ people to donate blood," Sept. 8: Shortly before the creation of the blood-donation policy that Rep. Demings now seeks to overturn, several infants who received transfusions at the hospital at the University of Florida contracted HIV from those transfusions. My baby was hospitalized there at that time. And, during that time, me and other mothers often expressed our fears – to each other and to our babies' doctors – about the danger of our babies contracting HIV from transfusions. The doctors told us that the chances of our children becoming thus infected was small, but we did not feel assured. And a few years later, it was discovered that some of those babies, hospitalized at that time at UF, were infected with HIV in the way that we mothers had all along feared – from transfusions.
Your news article mentions placing what you describe as bad policies into what you refer to as "the dustbin of history." Meanwhile, the children who contracted HIV through blood transfusions – prior to the blood-donation policy that Rep. Demings seeks to overturn – have lived, and died, with those HIV infections.
– Susan Washington, Orlando