[EM] Bullet voting in STV-PR

Olli Salmi olli.salmi at uusikaupunki.fi
Thu Apr 10 12:10:05 PDT 2003

At 14:56 +0200 9.4.2003, Markus Schulze wrote:
>  > After watching their candidates compete against each other in
>>  borough-wide elections in 1937, they evolved their own technique
>>  for obtaining maximum representation. Each borough was divided
>>  into the same number of zones as the number of councilmen it
>>  seemed likely to select. Within each zone the district leaders
>>  agreed upon a candidate. Then the entire slate was reviewed by
>>  the County Leader and Executive Committee, who ordered the party's
>>  adherents to follow an identical pattern of voting - i.e. the
>>  number to be placed beside each candidate's name in each zone
>>  was determined in advance. Proportionalists and their opponents
>>  agree that under this system in the 1939 election the Democrats
>>  massed their strength for optimum effectiveness.
>Today, this strategy is known as "Vote Management." The quotation
>above is very interesting because Vote Management has hardly been
>discussed before the 1970s. The quotation above is the oldest
>quotation that I have found where someone says that Vote Management
>is a useful strategy even under PR-STV with the Droop Quota. In my
>opinion, the quotation above shows that Shaw has understood STV at
>least better than those authors who claimed that it isn't possible
>for a given party to win additional seats by averaging the votes
>over the candidates of this party.

Could you please give us an example how it works? As far as I 
understand STV this is impossible. As long as you vote in a solid 
block (having the candidates of your party above all other 
candidates) you get the seats you are going to get. It's a different 
thing if the supporters of the other parties vote in a less 
disciplined way.

If you average the votes, your candidates may reach the quota without 
many transfers. If you don't, the votes will just get transferred 
until all the candidates you can elect have reached the quota. If you 
don't cast secondary preferences you can't help other candidates of 
your party and they may be unsuccessful. If you cast preferences only 
for the candidates you expect to elect, your opponents may be elected 
with less than the quota, which is not serious, you've only decided 
not to have an influence in the order they are elected.

Olli Salmi

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