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Guest J. Hauser

Determining winner with multiple candidates

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Guest J. Hauser

How do you determine the winner when 3 candidates are running for office?  Voting is by written ballot and there is no mention in the bylaws of how to determine winner.

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Unless you have a customized rule to the contrary in your bylaws, a majority vote is required to elect anyone to office.  Majority means "more than half".  So, in a race with three or more candidates, a candidate cannot be elected unless he receives more votes than all of the other candidates combined.  You keep voting until someone is elected.... or voluntarily withdraws.  You do not drop the candidate with the fewest number of votes.

Edited to add:  Here is what RONR says about it on page 441:  "Whichever one of the preceding methods of election is used, if any office remains unfilled after the first ballot, as may happen if there are more than two nominees, the balloting is repeated for that office as many times as necessary to obtain a majority vote for a single candidate. When repeated balloting for an office is necessary, individuals are never removed from candidacy on the next ballot unless they voluntarily withdraw—which they are not obligated to do.* The candidate in lowest place may turn out to be a "dark horse" on whom all factions may prefer to agree."

Edited by Richard Brown
Added last paragraph

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Guest Who's Coming to Dinner
3 minutes ago, Richard Brown said:

Unless you have a customized rule to the contrary in your bylaws, a majority vote is required to elect anyone to office.  Majority means "more than half".  So, in a race with three or more candidates, a candidate cannot be elected unless he receives more votes than all of the other candidates combined.  You keep voting until someone is elected.... or voluntarily withdraws.  You do not drop the candidate with the fewest number of votes.

The winner may need more than all of the other candidates combined if the vote is by ballot and there are illegal votes.

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21 minutes ago, Guest Who's Coming to Dinner said:

The winner may need more than all of the other candidates combined if the vote is by ballot and there are illegal votes.

Huh?  The winner will always need more votes than all of the other candidates combined.  Illegal votes may cause the number of votes needed to increase, since they count as "votes cast", but the number of votes needed will always be more than all of the other candidates combined... with or without illegal votes.

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