Here's a simplified version of how ranked-choice voting works for multiple candidates seeking one seat.

Voters make their first choice and, if desired, their second and third choices, ranked in order.

If a candidate gets 50 percent plus one of the first-choice votes, that candidate is elected. If no one gains that threshold, the lowest-ranked candidate is eliminated, plus any other candidate with no mathematical chance of winning. Then the second-choice votes of people who ranked the ousted candidates first are given to the remaining contenders.

This process is repeated until a candidate reaches the threshold to win, or, in the case of two remaining candidates, has more votes than the other.

Second- and third-choice votes aren't counted until the voter's first and second choices, respectively, are eliminated.

Example: Candidate A gets 41 votes; candidate B, 39 votes, and candidate C , 20 votes. Candidate C is eliminated, and that candidate's second-choice votes -- say 12 for candidate B and 8 for candidate A -- are tabulated. Candidate B now has 51 votes, Candidate A has 49, and so B wins.