Alternative Voting Systems


Many jurisdictions hold elections the way they’ve always done. A typical election requires voters to select one candidate per race and the candidate who receives the most votes is declared the winner. Today, however, there are alternatives to the traditional system.  These include proportional systems like ranked choice voting (sometimes known as single transferable voting), limited voting, and cumulative voting.  These alternative voting systems may be an option for states, cities, counties, school districts and other jurisdictions who may want or need to change the way they hold elections. Changing to an alternative election system requires legal guidance and experience.  This is where Angela Gabel, and her experience, can provide value.

Angela counsels clients interested in implementing changes. Whether it is a preventative or pre-litigation assessment to determine if a new system complies with state laws or a mid-litigation assessment to consider nontraditional options, she has the experience to help.  She has worked tirelessly in defense of jurisdictions who face similar challenges.

Angela is a pioneer in the Ranked Choice Voting defense space.  In November 2019, she worked with a municipality to litigate the move from  a traditional at-large voting system to a Ranked Choice Voting system. That election proceeded, using the Ranked Choice Voting system, flawlessly.

If your jurisdiction is considering a change in its voting system, Angela Gabel can help in the following ways:

  • Assessing the procedures required to implement a new system – whether it is a traditional at-large or single member districts, Ranked Choice Voting, Cumulative, or Limited Voting system;
  • Educating current officials on alternative voting systems, and the likely costs for implementing these systems;
  • Ascertaining the viability of the current voting equipment to accommodate limited, cumulative or ranked choice voting;
  • Analyzing potential state constitutional and election law challenges to any new system; and
  • Defending post-election challenges to alternative systems

Clients trust Angela Gabel’s experience and her understanding of the rapidly changing landscape facing today’s jurisdictions.