Monthly Archives: May 2010

Myth Busting: The winner should win

A frequent objection to systems other than the old First Past The Post system is that “the winner does not always win”.  I think we need to make sure we understand what we mean by “winner” and “win”. Continue reading

Myth Busting: It’s too complicated

Often said of STV (The Single Transferable Vote).  The name is initially the hardest bit; but it says it all:

“I have a single vote and I can instruct the returning officer how to transfer it so as to best elect my choice of candidates.  I do this by putting a “1” against my first choice, a “2” against my second choice, a “3” against my third choice and so on until I am indifferent as to further preferences.”

For the voter it is as simple as that. Continue reading

Myth Busting: The Constituency Link

“The Constituency Link” is often claimed by opponents of reform to be a vital element of the operation of representative democracy.  By this they mean single member constituencies.

But how real is this link and to who does it matter?  I suspect that outside the politorarti it is far less sacrosanct than claimed. Continue reading

Myth Busting: The Israeli Example

Israel is often quoted as an example of the dangers of electoral reform.

In essence Israel is treated as a single constituency country and members are elected in strict proportion to the votes cast.  A consequence of this is that parties with very little support can get elected and have a possibly disproportionate impact on the government.  However, no one is suggesting this particular system for the UK – Proportional Representation is not a “single system”.

Continue reading

What I want to be enfranchised

To be considered enfranchised I need:

  1. To be able to express a preference or preferences for individuals.
  2. For that expression to have some effect.

Continue reading