[EM] CR style ballots for Ranked Preferences

Richard Moore rmoore4 at home.com
Tue Sep 25 19:10:07 PDT 2001

Jobst Heitzig wrote:
>Right - okay. But doesn't that show that this voting system

>is quite bad?

Believe it or not, there are many people who don't think so. I doubt 
that includes any of the people on the EM list, though.

>Anyway, I don't think the notion of "inconsistency" applies

>also to voting systems that elect representatives instead of a single

>winner. How would "inconsistent" be defined then? What I was talking about

>was the situation where the electorate elects one winner, and I still cannot

>see why this decision should take place first in groups rather than at

The fact is that a presidential election (single-winner) is won by 
winning the most electors. The electors have no power beyond choosing 
the president, so they are not the "winners" of this system. Calling 
them "representatives" when they are almost purely mechanical agents 
doesn't help. The system elects one winner, but decisions are first 
made at the state level, then the national level, so this is related to 
(though slightly different from) the inconsistency problem.
To top it off, most states award the electors to a candidate on an 
all-or-none basis.

Very flawed, as we saw last year.

Occassionally electors will go against their party but such cases are 
very rare. That is why I called them "almost" purely mechanical.


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