Playing politics in Commander is an integral part of the game, at least when you’re playing with three or more people. It’s fun to bicker about why your very obvious game-ending threat is cute actually, and see if you can bargain your way into a win.
However, you can also indulge in politics in a far more literal sense thanks to the cards that let you and other players vote for different outcomes. We’re a big fan of those, and that strategy in general, so we thought we’d make a list of the best ones.
The best voting cards in Commander
Not every one of these cards actually has you voting, some of them are support cards instead. One of the most entertaining support cards is Grudge Keeper, a two-mana black 2/1 that reads, “Whenever players finish voting, each opponent who voted for a choice you didn’t vote for loses 2 life.” Sure, it’s kind of petty, and the life isn’t even that much, but it’s a fun one to do if you can recur your voting cards a lot.
10 – Ballot Broker
Ballot Broker is a three-mana white 2/3 with a simple effect. They simply allow you to vote an additional time if you want to, which you’re usually going to want to do. It’s nothing fancy, not at all, but it’s the kind of thing that can absolutely guarantee that you always get your way, and that’s what this is all about.
Also 10 -Brago’s Representative
Brago’s Representative is also a three-mana white card, but they’re a 1/4 instead. Also, instead of giving you the option to vote an additional time, you actually have to vote an additional time. Both are good, but more or less the same, hence both being number ten on our list.
9 – Split Decision
Split Decision is a two-mana blue instant that lets you do a lot of silly things, but mostly when your opponents are also doing silly things. That’s because it reads, “Choose target instant or sorcery spell. Starting with you, each player votes for denial or duplication. If denial gets more votes, counter the spell. If duplication gets more votes or the vote is tied, copy the spell. You may choose new targets for the copy.” This is at its most entertaining when targeting a counterspell, because it basically allows you to negate it no matter what.
8 – Capital Punishment
Capital Punishment is a six-mana black sorcery that lets you deal with enemy resources. “Starting with you, each player votes for death or taxes. Each opponent sacrifices a creature for each death vote and discards a card for each taxes vote.” This one’s fun because no matter what the vote is, you get a result from it, and it’s hard to argue with that.
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7 – Plea for Power
Plea for Power is a four-mana blue Sorcery that lets you either take an extra turn, or draw three cards. You obviously want to take an extra turn if possible, but it’s nice to draw cards as the fail state here. Four mana is also quite a good rate for it, the key to this one is having someone on side or an archenemy to promise you’ll defeat with that extra turn.
6 – Magister of Worth
Speaking of keeping people on-side, Magister of Worth is a great six-mana white and black 4/4 with flying that also happens to be excellent for making people happy. “When Magister of Worth enters the battlefield, starting with you, each player votes for grace or condemnation. If grace gets more votes, each player returns each creature card from their graveyard to the battlefield. If condemnation gets more votes or the vote is tied, destroy all creatures other than Magister of Worth.” See, that’s a hard thing to say no to, and it’s always good to have people owe you favors.
5 – Coercive Portal
Coercive Portal is a good one to play if you find you need a threat on board to keep others away from you. It’s a four-mana artifact that reads, “At the beginning of your upkeep, starting with you, each player votes for carnage or homage. If carnage gets more votes, sacrifice Coercive Portal and destroy all nonland permanents. If homage gets more votes or the vote is tied, draw a card.” Getting an extra card each turn is good, but the ability to swing things in your favor and wipe the board is even better.
4 – Selvala’s Stampede
Selvala has always been about the greater good, and this card is a nice chance for them to benefit a bit from that. For six mana, Selvala’s Stampede is a green sorcery that reads, “Starting with you, each player votes for wild or free. Reveal cards from the top of your library until you reveal a creature card for each wild vote. Put those creature cards onto the battlefield, then shuffle the rest into your library. You may put a permanent card from your hand onto the battlefield for each free vote.” We all love free stuff, don’t we?
3 – Council’s Judgement
Board wipes are good, but it’s nice to have some targeted removal where possible too. For three mana, Council’s Judgement is a white sorcery that says, “Starting with you, each player votes for a nonland permanent you don’t control. Exile each permanent with the most votes or tied for most votes.” Being able to exile multiple things potentially is huge.
2 – Expropriate
Despite being the most mana-intensive card on the list, it’s hard to deny the pure power of Expropriate. This is a blue sorcery that reads, “Starting with you, each player votes for time or money. For each time vote, take an extra turn after this one. For each money vote, choose a permanent owned by the voter and gain control of it. Exile Expropriate.” Not being able to recur this easily is a shame, but it’s still an absurdly powerful effect.
1 – Illusion of Choice
Finally, how could the best card on a list about the best voting cards not be the one that allows you to make sure you always win. For a single blue mana, Illusion of Choice is an instant that not only lets you draw a card, but also lets you choose how other players vote for the rest of the turn. That’s not what we’d call democracy, but it’ll definitely get the job done.