[EM] List PR

LAYTON Craig Craig.LAYTON at add.nsw.gov.au
Sun Jun 17 16:29:44 PDT 2001

Bart wrote:

>I like it.  It looks as though in the non-partisan case (or one where
>there is exactly one candidate from each party), the system equates to
>cumulative voting.  But at the opposite end, where all candidates belong
>to a single party, it's equivalent to approval voting.
>Or at least a multi-winner form of approval voting.  But in that case it
>seems like it would be in the interest of at least some of the party
>members to split the party.  I wonder if there's a corresponding
>incentive to merge when there are too many parties?

I contemplated what effect this system might have on how the parties design
their lists/how many candidates etc.  Because the party hierarchy has no
control over which candidates get elected first, they may try to limit the
number of candidates to slightly more than they expect to get seats, so that
most of their selected candidates can be elected.  Splitting a political
party is usually fairly difficult, because you either have to convince the
voters that it is the same party (which will confuse people no end), or that
it stands for something different/ has a different focus.  Voters are
usually very suspicious of such things, especially if you go straight into
coalition as soon as you're elected (ie it would only work once).

On the other hand, it will be in the interest of parties to try and woo as
many "swinging voters" or multiple party voters as possible.  To do this,
they will need to present a range of attractive candidates (attractive to
vote for, not to look at, but who knows?). This may mean candidates who
don't fully align themselves with the party line (or candidates from
different factions, or candidates wearing Versace), and might actually make
the lists larger, rather than smaller.

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