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Questions tagged [voting-systems]

For questions about rule systems for scoring votes. Not for questions about country-specific rules or practices but for the theory and practice of voting systems. Examples include proportional-representation and first-past-the-post.

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84 votes
10 answers
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Has negative voting ever been officially implemented in elections, or seriously proposed, or even studied?

I struggled to name what I'm asking about here. I'm talking about the kind of voting that happens on many websites, including stackexchange: you can upvote something (a question), or you can downvote ...
Ne Mo's user avatar
  • 1,673
48 votes
25 answers
7k views

How could I build a political system immune to gerrymandering yet still giving local representation?

For a hypothetical world, how can I build a political system in which: People are represented by someone local to them. And: The number of representatives elected representing a movement in total ...
User12321313's user avatar
47 votes
9 answers
20k views

What arguments are there against ranked-choice voting?

In America, most elections are based on first-past-the-post voting, where whoever gets a plurality of the votes wins. For instance if candidate A gets 40% of the vote and each of candidates B and C ...
Keshav Srinivasan's user avatar
47 votes
8 answers
68k views

What are the advantages/disadvantages of a mandatory voting system?

Living in a country where mandatory voting exists and experiencing the results in another without mandatory, I'm wondering: What are the advantages and disadvantages of mandatory voting?
Sven Clement's user avatar
  • 5,413
46 votes
4 answers
7k views

Has there ever been a successful shift from a two-party system to a multi-party system in modern history?

The other day my friends and I gathered in the college dorm and expressed grievances about our electoral systems. Those from countries where one or two parties dominate the legislature were frustrated ...
nkt32716's user avatar
  • 477
45 votes
8 answers
5k views

What are the fundamental reasons for indirect presidential vote in the US?

I am French and therefore have understandably a hard time understanding the cultural aspects of indirect voting in the United States. I read the history of this approach and some of the main technical ...
WoJ's user avatar
  • 3,392
43 votes
3 answers
9k views

What are the disadvantages of first-past-the-post electoral systems?

We all know the situation could arise in the U.S. where one candidate wins the popular vote but another one the electoral college. Given that the same could arise in the United Kingdom and other ...
Sven Clement's user avatar
  • 5,413
41 votes
4 answers
9k views

What is it called when someone votes for an option that's not their first choice?

Say we have three candidates: A, B, and C. Say, a voter wants to vote for C. However, he knows that C can’t win and hence choose A instead. Hence, in a sense, the voter is “dishonest”. He doesn’t ...
user4951's user avatar
  • 4,301
32 votes
3 answers
7k views

Why is the new German parliament 12 % bigger?

Before the German federal election in September 2017, the parliament (Bundestag) had 631 members; now it has 709 . How did this come about? Does it matter, or is it a second-order effect? See also: ...
denis's user avatar
  • 421
31 votes
8 answers
7k views

Why doesn't the UK Labour Party push for proportional representation?

There is a consistent majority for liberal (progressive) parties in the UK, but they regularly cannibalise each other in the first-past-the-post voting system (see Wikipedia for details). The last ...
sba222's user avatar
  • 799
28 votes
1 answer
4k views

How did Alaska "change its primary system recently" and was it "to dilute the possibility of a conservative or Trump-inspired challenger"?

Politico's GOP pushes Murkowski to stay in line against Biden’s Covid bill includes the following: Murkowski is unique, however, and so is her home of Alaska. The state is suffering economically, the ...
uhoh's user avatar
  • 17.1k
27 votes
4 answers
8k views

Why can't voting be fair if there are more than two alternatives?

I've heard that mathematically it can be shown that given any voting system with more than two choices, voters can cheat the system by not voting their true opinions in order to game the system and ...
WilliamKF's user avatar
  • 1,577
27 votes
5 answers
4k views

Why isn't a Condorcet method used?

A Condorcet method is an election system where voters rate their candidates in order of preference. As an example, for candidates A B and C, a valid vote can be [A > B > C], [C > B > A], [B > A > C] ...
Diane M's user avatar
  • 413
27 votes
1 answer
2k views

Name of a voting system where you can transfer your vote to anyone at any time

I remember reading about a theoretical electoral system where votes are passed on in a continuously changing graph. I would like to know the name or origin of this system. This is my approximate ...
last-child's user avatar
26 votes
17 answers
2k views

Is it possible to use blockchain or public ledgers for voting?

As a software developer, I routinely get asked this question and frequently see it being asked online too; it seemed like a great question to pose for the wonderful StackExchange community. For a ...
Luke Briggs's user avatar
26 votes
4 answers
5k views

Is there an operating political system in which an election can be invalidated because of a too little participation?

I don't know enough about the many election systems throughout the world, but what I often see is that the abstention rate is at best an indicator (of something), if it's taken into account at all. I ...
Laurent S.'s user avatar
26 votes
8 answers
5k views

What are the disadvantages to 2-round elections where the top candidates from the first round compete head-to-head in the second round?

This is the election system in France and Ukraine. In the first round anyone can run. If no candidate wins an absolute majority, then the top two candidates go to a second round where they face off ...
Allure's user avatar
  • 35.6k
25 votes
8 answers
6k views

Why does ranked-choice voting give such high preference to the second choice of the least-favored candidate's voters?

Ranked choice voting is in the news lately because of the big mess New York City has made of implementing it in its Democratic primaries for the mayoral race. But in the talk about how it works, one ...
Mason Wheeler's user avatar
25 votes
4 answers
2k views

Has range voting been successfully implemented anywhere?

To improve upon traditional democracy, various alternatives to the normal up down voting have been put forth such as range voting. (Range voting is a voting method for one-seat elections under which ...
WilliamKF's user avatar
  • 1,577
24 votes
15 answers
8k views

What electoral mechanisms might prevent the rise of a demagogue?

I realize that this may be one of the intentions of the US Electoral College system. Its most obvious role is to prevent a candidate of purely local appeal from winning nationally, but another de-...
jez's user avatar
  • 691
24 votes
7 answers
2k views

Is there any possibility to have a democracy inherently discourage lobbying?

Can a democratic system be structured in a way that doesn't rely on ethics or brute-force, police-state-esque measures to disable lobbying? Is there a way to inherently make lobbying unattractive/...
kram1032's user avatar
  • 343
23 votes
3 answers
56k views

Which US states give proportional Presidential electoral college votes to candidates?

The US Presidential election uses an "electoral college" system, where each state gets a certain number of "electors" (votes), and those electors cast the official votes for President. Each state's ...
user1873's user avatar
  • 14k
23 votes
3 answers
5k views

Does Gibbard–Satterthwaite theorem apply to all voting systems?

People often say "It's been mathematically proven that no perfect voting system is possible" and cite Arrow's Impossibility Theorem, but Arrow's theorem specifically only applies to ranked/...
endolith's user avatar
  • 3,552
21 votes
2 answers
5k views

Why is the French democracy not using proportional representation for election of the assembly?

Proportional representation was used during the French Fourth Republic, while other kinds of voting systems were preferred during the French Third Republic and the French Fifth Republic (with an ...
Wok's user avatar
  • 321
20 votes
4 answers
669 views

What legal impediments might there be to alternate voting systems?

Most jurisdictions in the US use first-past-the-post voting. This appears to me to be a historical artifact; I'm not aware of any legal impediments on a federal level that would prevent states or ...
Stephen Collings's user avatar
19 votes
5 answers
5k views

Why is First past the post used in so many countries?

First past the post is used in the vast majority of countries, despite its numerous crippling flaws. Such countries include: Canada, USA, Bangladesh, India, Jamaica, Kuwait, Liberia, Mexico, Pakistan, ...
JS Lavertu's user avatar
19 votes
5 answers
2k views

What was the largest popular vote election ever held?

What was the largest popular vote election ever held for a personally-held position? This means an election for an elected position, with people directly voting for the choice of candidates (e.g. US ...
user4012's user avatar
  • 92.6k
18 votes
5 answers
3k views

Ranked voting by a committee when some members cannot vote for a particular candidate because of a conflict of interest

I'm in a 12-person committee where we have to rank 5 candidates whom we have interviewed for a position. Some members of the committee have a conflict of interest, so they had to leave the room when a ...
Carlo Beenakker's user avatar
17 votes
3 answers
5k views

Is there a name for a voting system that is based on issues rather than people?

I'm not super familiar with the intricacies of the various voting systems, so forgive me if I'm way off in an assumption I have. However, in all election formats I know of, voters are expected to ...
David Starkey's user avatar
16 votes
12 answers
7k views

Is there a voting system to elect multiple candidates and ensure diversity within those elected?

Let's say I have a number of places that I need to fill with elected candidates. I would like people to be able to vote for the candidates using a system that does its best to end up with a diverse ...
Dan's user avatar
  • 287
16 votes
5 answers
2k views

Why not give representatives as many votes as they received in the election?

A common complaint or source of disenfranchisement in democracies is that many constituents don't feel that their vote "counts" because the margin in most electorates is far greater than a single vote....
jim's user avatar
  • 872
16 votes
1 answer
269 views

Does stronger geographic representation lead to stronger regional identities?

Are there any studies which would conclude whether stronger geographic representation in voting systems is a significant contributor to strong regional identities in a country?
Probably's user avatar
  • 1,529
15 votes
4 answers
7k views

How will New York City physically implement the ranked choice voting algorithm with thousands of unique mayoral votings possible?

Politico's New Yorkers pick a new mayor after chaotic, historic primary begins: NEW YORK — Polls have closed in New York City’s first ever ranked-choice election and, while the die has been cast, ...
uhoh's user avatar
  • 17.1k
15 votes
6 answers
2k views

What if no party crosses the electoral threshold in a parliamentary election?

In some countries, there is an electoral threshold that political parties must cross to win seats in the parliament. For example, in Germany, the threshold is 5% of national votes, in Sweden the ...
QuantumWalnut's user avatar
15 votes
2 answers
2k views

How does Single Transferable Vote work?

I've heard that some elections use single transferable vote. What is this and how does it work? How does it differ from a standard majority vote election?
Jez's user avatar
  • 609
15 votes
1 answer
824 views

Why does the French election have a runoff election instead of preferential voting

In the recent French election, there will now be another vote between Macron and La Pen to determine a winner. A lot of other countries seem to have this system. Elections are not cheap and having ...
Vop's user avatar
  • 151
15 votes
1 answer
250 views

How do instant runoffs work?

I've read that some elections have instant runoffs. What are they and how do they work? How do they differ from a standard majority vote election?
segiddins's user avatar
  • 413
14 votes
4 answers
3k views

Which electoral systems minimise the extent to which political parties control who gets elected?

Political parties are, obviously, very important in democratic systems. Most candidates will be selected by a party. But many systems make it easy for the party to control which specific members end ...
matt_black's user avatar
  • 3,891
14 votes
3 answers
4k views

Why do proportional representation voting systems not evolve to first past the post systems?

The first past the post voting system tends to favour a two-party system. Suppose an election is held using a proportional representation voting system. Then suppose that the two largest parties, ...
danger mouse's user avatar
  • 1,103
14 votes
2 answers
599 views

Who is the Condorcet winner of NYC's 2021 mayoral Democratic primary?

The 2021 mayoral primary in New York City was done using Instant Runoff Voting ("Ranked Choice Voting"). This system does not necessarily elect the Condorcet winner, if one exists. (The ...
endolith's user avatar
  • 3,552
14 votes
1 answer
1k views

Why are there so many voting systems used in UK elections?

Today, I went to vote in elections to select a regional mayor for the first time. Local government elections in the UK, like elections for Parliament, use the first past the post system. I was thus ...
Bob Tway's user avatar
  • 1,835
13 votes
6 answers
3k views

Why do referendums use a binary choice rather than a numerical score?

In some democracies, citizens may be asked if they accept a law or the modification of a law in a "yes or no" referendum. Most of the time, legal texts are complicated and specialized, so ...
QuantumPotatoïd's user avatar
13 votes
3 answers
5k views

Voting system with two votes as a defense against fear of voting for a loser - is it anywhere in the world?

In some countries there is a big fear among voters of voting for a party that doesn't end up in the parliament because they didn't reach the minimum threshold of votes, making their votes go in vain. ...
David Apltauer's user avatar
13 votes
7 answers
3k views

Is there an election System that allows for seats to be empty?

Is there an election System that allows for potential seats to be empty? E.g if there are 7 seats that could potentially be filled but the people voting only want 5 to be filled. For context: We are ...
Chris Fraser's user avatar
13 votes
9 answers
5k views

What are the benefits/drawbacks of a weighted vote based upon federal taxes paid?

Alexander Fraser Tytler famously said: "A democracy cannot exist as a permanent form of government. It can only exist until the majority discovers it can vote itself largess out of the public ...
user1873's user avatar
  • 14k
13 votes
3 answers
3k views

In countries using Single Transferable Vote, how are voting results presented?

In electoral systems based on parties, it is easy to publish the results: it is sufficient to publish the number of votes each party received. These numbers contain all the information that is needed ...
Erel Segal-Halevi's user avatar
13 votes
3 answers
3k views

Why is Schulze the most popular Condorcet election method?

It's been my impression that when people are discussing "Condorcet voting", they often implicitly mean the Schulze/beatpath method. Wikipedia's "Use of Condorcet voting" list also seems to be ...
endolith's user avatar
  • 3,552
13 votes
6 answers
2k views

Why is insincere/tactical/strategic voting considered undesirable?

In most of scholarly discussions about voting systems, the implication seems to be that one of the desired goals is to minimize/eliminate insincere/tactical/strategic voting: Tactical voting is ...
user4012's user avatar
  • 92.6k
13 votes
2 answers
2k views

Why are there exceptions to Duverger's Law?

Duverger's law states that in a first past the post electoral system, the system will end up with a two party system. However, many countries with first past the post electoral systems (such as India,...
Yosef Mordechai Coleman's user avatar
12 votes
10 answers
2k views

Are/were there any countries where rich people have more votes?

Are/were there any countries where richer people have more active votes than poorer people? For example: someone with an income of $5,000/month would have 5x more votes than a person with an income of ...
kandi's user avatar
  • 3,385

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