AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) — The future of Maine's statewide voting system approved by voters last fall remains unclear as lawmakers debate.

The state Supreme Judicial Court this year issued a nonbinding decision that the method is unconstitutional when it comes to elections for governor and state lawmakers.

The law, as it stands, would allow residents to rank their ballot choices from first to last.

The House gave initial approval Thursday to Democratic Sen. Cathy Breen's bill for a constitutional amendment allowing ranked-choice voting. The Senate passed the bill Wednesday after a 17-17 vote stymied an effort to kill Breen's bill.

The next steps include two-thirds support in both chambers and voter approval.

The Senate on Wednesday tabled Republican Sen. Garrett Mason's bill to repeal the ranked-choice voting law.
Republican Gov. Paul LePage supports repeal.