Picking your top four candidates…

Voting is underway! If you’re researching and reading through your choices before finalizing your ballot – we wanted to help explain one unique aspect of voting in Oakland – ranked choice. 

Ranked choice voting lets voters rank their choices in order of preference. So instead of voting for just one winner, you can mark candidates as your first, second, and third choice picks and so on. This can make a big difference in the outcome of the election. If no candidate wins a majority from #1 picks (more than 50% of the votes), then the candidate with the least amount of votes is disqualified and their votes are redistributed to the other candidates based on voters’ second-choice preferences. The winner is chosen based on the first candidate to receive over 50% of the votes. Here’s a quick video explainer to describe how it works. 


The ranked choice system is critical in the case of school board races, as with a crowded field, each seat is up for grabs. For example, in the district 3 race, our community endorsed both Maiya Edgerly and Mark Hurty. Our recommendation is to vote for Maiya and Mark as your first and second votes.

We get lots of questions about ranked-choice voting strategy. The strategy is simple: just vote for the candidates in order of preference.

  • Does it help if I vote for my favorite candidate in all 4 spots? No, this means your 2nd, 3rd, and 4th place votes will not be counted if your candidate is eliminated. Put your preferred candidate first, and then rank the others in order of preference.
  • What if I really don’t want a certain candidate? It’s OK to leave them off your ballot entirely if you want, but the important thing to do is vote for all of the other candidates in order of your preference.

Registered voters should have received their ballots by now (you can track where your ballot is here). Check out and share our How-to-Vote infographic for the 3 ways to turn in your ballot by November 3rd. Here’s a reminder of all of our voting recommendations for Education Voters:

With just 18 days until Election Day, email us back if you can help with writing postcards, calling voters, texting voters, or telling your friends about our supported candidates and measures! You can also sign up here.

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Paid for by Families and Educators for Public Education, sponsored by GO Public Schools Advocates. Committee major funding from: Michael Bloomberg. This advertisement was not authorized by a candidate or a committee controlled by a candidate.

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