The Ideal Single Winner Method

New Democracy donald at
Tue Apr 8 07:36:16 PDT 1997

Dear List members,

     On the fool's day - Steve wrote the following: "This seems like a good
time to explain the ideal single-winner voting method, known as INSTANT

     At first I thought Steve was playing the fool - but now I am going to
take him at face value.

     Yes Steve - you are correct - the method is the ideal method to use
for any single-winner election. It is head and shoulders above any other
single-winner method. You are doing great Steve - you are improving - you
are starting to learn.

     This method already has a name - it is called Preference Run-off -
which is a part of Preference Voting - which is the name I use because of
its greater name recognition - but what's in a name. A rose by any other
name would still smell as sweet - oh! how sweet it is. If you are able to
get people to use instant consensus then I'll say more power to you.

     I have long advocated that all run-offs should be worked until the
number of candidates left are equal to the number of seats we are going to
fill - even if we have a candidate with a majority on the first count. The
following text on that point is from my web site - read it again for the
first time.

     "It is possible that one of the candidates had a simple majority on
the first tally or on the second, or before most other candidates were
dropped. For academic reasons the routine of running a tally, dropping only
the one lowest candidate, transferring the votes, and repeating it over and
over, should be followed until only one candidate remains. This will leave
a record that gives the final strength and popularity of all candidates.
The final candidate could end up with more than eighty percent of the vote
- that would be a good vote of confidence."

     Speaking of web sites - when is your site going to be ready for us to
see? I hope to find a few more gems like instant consensus among your

     Keep up the good work Steve - this fool's day was a great day for both
you and the election reform movement.

Donald Eric Davison of New Democracy at

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