What's wrong with our elections?

Answer

Our current "pick-one" plurality election system...

Punishes voters with "wasting their vote" if they choose their actual favorite and don't use their ballot to support a "front-runner" candidate or one from the two major parties.

Let's unpopular politicians win by allowing candidates to be elected even when the majority of voters oppose them.

Makes elections toxic by incentivizing candidates to beat down their opponents and exaggerate differences, missing opportunities to reinforce areas of agreement that unify the electorate and create consensus for getting important things done after the election.

Is fragile and vulnerable to manipulation and broken, inaccurate outcomes as soon as more than two candidates run. This is because of "vote splitting" and the "spoiler effect". Two or more candidates or parties running on similar platforms penalize each other and divide their shared base of supporters, rather than reinforcing their mutual efforts.

Limits participation by discouraging new candidates from running and new parties from forming.

The results are catastrophic...

Denial of choice to voters, breeding disinterest and cynicism.

Poisoning of political culture and magnification of partisan division.

Gridlock around big problems rather than common purpose taking action.

Erosion of competition, innovation, and problem solving in elections and government.

Government of the powerful, not of the people.