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What is cumulative voting and how does it work?

What is cumulative voting and how does it work?

Older associations almost always had a provision that allowed for cumulative voting. Cumulative voting allows a member to use all his votes in favor of one candidate. So if 5 members were up for annual election as board candidates, a member could cast all five votes for one candidate and none for anyone else. In a smaller association it would not take many people doing the same thing for one candidate to get elected if he had just a few stalwart friends who always voted for him. In a larger association the same holds true but less certainly. As a rule, it is not uncommon for members not to know the candidates personally, except perhaps in a senior community. The result is members will tend to disperse their votes evenly among the candidates not favoring any one person. A determined effort by one person accumulating 5 votes at a time can lead to a minority candidate being elected. Nowadays most associations do not allow cumulative voting and members are forced to choose from among a few perhaps unknowns or to cast maybe a single vote or two for their favored candidates.

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