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Commission race results have some pondering approval voting

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FARGO—Incumbents Tony Gehrig and Dave Piepkorn will return to their seats on the Fargo City Commission after winning their elections.

But some challengers think the voting system may need a revamp.

"The vote totals, almost 3 to 1, voters preferred the challengers," said challenger Linda Boyd.

At a reported 18 percent, Commissioner Tony Gehrig was the top vote-getter among the hotly contested Fargo Commission race, votes were split several ways with 6 front runners.

Some of his opponents, like Linda Boyd and Arlette Preston, think a change may be in order.

"It's really tough to govern when you don't have a solid majority backing you," said Preston.

They believe an approval voting system may work better.

The idea has been kicked around for commission races in the past.

"We need to give that a try," Says Preston.

With approval voting, you could vote for as many candidates as you like.

The idea is to elect whoever most people approve of.

"We still might very well have people voting for one person or just two," said Preston.

The second winner from the commission race, Dave Piepkorn, says it was a tight one with plenty of good candidates.

"Six highly qualified- that's a strong a field as we've ever had."

No major city has used approval voting for an election, and he's not keen on playing guinea pig.

"No place uses that so I'd rather see another place use it before we would. with approval voting it gets a little vague," says Piepkorn.

Piepkorn says he's open to the idea of switching to Approval Voting, if that's what voters want.

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