Voters will have a chance to reform that system on Nov. 3 with a ballot measure that would remove party affiliation from the city’s primaries and make the general election a runoff between the two top vote recipients.
Posted by Russell Daniels on August 31, 2020 at 9:11 AM
If much of St. Louis frequently seems unhappy with the city’s political leadership, it may be because, too often, the mayor and other top officials were chosen by a small minority of the voters. Mayor Lyda Krewson, for example, won the 2017 Democratic primary — which in this Democratic city is tantamount to winning the seat — with just 32% of the vote in a crowded field.
The change that the advocacy group STL Approves got onto the November ballot via petitions would create a nonpartisan election system, which is what most other municipalities in Missouri and much of America use. A twist to the proposed St. Louis plan is that primary voters could choose as many candidates as they want for mayor, comptroller, alderman and aldermanic president. That method is a form of “approval voting,” in that it doesn’t force voters to split their votes if they favor two or more candidates. The winner is then chosen in the runoff of the top two.