[EM] Vote Management

Alex Small asmall at physics.ucsb.edu
Fri Apr 11 11:53:12 PDT 2003

James Gilmour said:
> This may be a defect, but we must keep it in perspective.

First, I meant it as a more technical post rather than an opinion post.  I
merely observed that some systems exhibit a particular property while
others don't, and contemplated the question of whether there were systems
I hadn't thought of that were free from that property.

Second, I use the term "party" rather loosely.  It could mean a group of
politicians seeking to maximize the number of people elected from their
little circle, or it could mean a group of voters with common interests
trying to maximize the number of candidates representing their interests. 
In a candidate-based system like STV, those voters might cut across
nominal party lines.

For instance, there are groups in the US that encourage female candidates
of any party to run for office, believing that their interests will be
advanced by the presence of women in elected office, irrespective of
partisan label.  We might analyze a PR system to see how people concerned
with electing women could maximize their representation, just as we could
analyze it to see how it affects people concerned with electing Democrats,
Republicans, environmentalists, civil libertarians, pro-war politicians,

So, I still maintain that the notion of a party, if applied to the voters
rather than the politicians, is useful for ANALYZING a PR system.  After
all, the goal of PR (as I understand it) is to accurately reflect the
spectrum of opinions held by the voters.

I suspect that it is possible to devise non-list PR systems that don't
give like-minded voters reason to worry about whether they're spreading
their support too thinly among candidates or not thinly enough.  I suspect
that Proportional Approval Voting is one such system, and I'm curious if
other such methods exist.


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