Republican Congressman Sues to Stop Algorithm From Deciding Election in Maine

Rep. Bruce Poliquin (R-ME)

Republican Congressman for Maine’s 2nd district, Bruce Poliquin filed a federal lawsuit Tuesday against Maine’s Secretary of State to stop an algorithm from deciding the election in his race against Democrat opponent Jared Golden.

Via the Press Herald:

Republican 2nd District Congressman Bruce Poliquin filed a federal lawsuit Tuesday against Maine’s Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap in an attempt to stop a tabulation of ranked-choice ballots in his race against Democratic challenger Jared Golden.

The suit filed in federal court in Bangor is asking for an injunction against Dunlap to stop what would be the first congressional race in the nation to be decided through ranked-choice voting. Neither Poliquin nor Golden secured a majority of the vote in the first round of counting, pushing the tabulation to voters’ second choices in an attempt to determine which candidate has the support of more than 50 percent of voters.

Maine voters have approved the process twice at the ballot box.

Poliquin’s suit claims the use of ranked-choice voting violates the U.S. Constitution because the document “sets a plurality vote as the qualification for election” to Congress.

Bruce Poliquin also sent a letter to Secretary of State Dunlap’s office requesting his staff stop processing votes ahead of Wednesday’s “ranked-choice” run-off.

Republican Congressman Bruce Poliquin pointed out that Maine has a long history of plurality winners in its elections.

Bruce Poliquin also argued against an algorithm deciding the Maine election in a Facebook post Tuesday.

“This system only adds additional cost to taxpayers, creates overwhelming confusion for our citizens, and is ripe for mishandling and unlawful electioneering actions, as evidenced already,” Poliquin wrote on Facebook. “Mainers deserve better than their money being wasted, their frustrations growing, and their sacred right of voting being manipulated.”

Poliquin’s opponent Jared Golden responded to the lawsuit Tuesday.

The case has been assigned to Judge Lance Walker.

Lance Walker was nominated by President Trump and confirmed by the US Senate in October.

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