Plan B and Secret Lower Choices

Mike Ositoff ntk at
Sat Oct 3 23:23:33 PDT 1998


replying farther down:

> Dear Mike Ossitoff,
>      In regard to my suggestion of Cumulative Approval Voting, you wrote:
> "It's equivalent to FFP. Your best strategy is to give all your votes to
> the candidate with greatest strategic value."
>      You are correct, it is equivalent to First Past the Post(FPP).
>      But, the value of considering Cumulative Approval Voting is that it
> will give us some insight into the wishes of the voters. Most of the voters
> will put the lion share of their cumulative votes on one candidate. This is
> the wish of the voter.
>      You have no right to say that the voters wish something else. For
> years you have been including the lower choices into some sort of summary
> and declaring that you know the "wishes of the voter". Your summary is not
> correct.
>      The first choice of the voter is the voter's "Plan A".
>      The second choice of the voter is the voter's "Plan B".
>      As a voter I would like my lower choices to be secret - secret from
> the eyes of everyone. Secret until I need to go to Plan B. I want my lower
> choices kept secret because there are people like you that try to read
> things into my lower choices - things that are not there.
>      Approval Voting and/or Condorcet are not in my lower choices. The only
> thing in my lower choices is my Plan B. I want my vote to be on my first
> choice - my Plan A. And to stay with my first choice for as long as my
> first choice can make the cut. When my first choice can no longer make the
> cut then I will go to Plan B.
>      I accept that my first choice may miss the cut by only one vote. Just
> like I accept that my first choice may only win by one vote.
>      It is acceptable to eliminate the lowest candidate because the lowest
> candidate did not make the cut. It is acceptable for a method to eliminate
> the lowest candidate.
>      Choice Run-Off is the best method because it keeps my next choice out
> of play until I want to go to my Plan B.
>      If I am forced to vote in an Approval Voting or Condorcet election, I
> will not make any lower choices. And, I will tell everyone that they too
> should not make any lower choices - because the lower choices will directly
> or indirectly work against their first choice - against their Plan A.

Excellent. Good luck. If you tell them that in Approval, you
might as well tell them that now, to only vote for their favorite.
I sometimes tell them that too. But they still vote for a LO2E
compromise. At least in Approval they can vote for their favorite
too (unlike FPP or IRO).

> Regards,
> Donald Davison
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