[EM] The responsiveness of Condorcet

Adam Tarr atarr at purdue.edu
Sun Jul 13 21:27:02 PDT 2003

David Gamble wrote:

>In James Armytage-Green's post he refers to a scenario in which Congress 
>is elected in single-member districts by Condorcet.  This is what a number 
>of people posting on this list appear to support  ( though James 
>Armytage-Green  supports CPO-STV in multi-member districts as an ideal 

Has ANYONE on this list said that they want single-member districts using 
Condorcet voting?  I don't remember ever hearing that.  Some people have 
expressed a desire to have single-winner districts in the past (to get a 
closer link to the voters) but most offer a caveat of some mixed member 

>I have stated in several postings that there can be nothing proportional 
>about the allocation of a single seat and that all single-member methods 
>can produce bad results when used to elect multi-member bodies.

Doesn't that suggest that arguing that Condorcet is bad because it fails to 
produce proportionality, is sort of missing the point?

>I still believe that for single offices Condorcet is too favourable 
>towards candidates of  parties who successfully position themselves in the 

Right, candidates who appeal to the largest group of voters tend to win 
Condorcet elections.  You say this like it's a bad thing.  Such a candidate 
also always wins IRV elections if the voters use sufficiently intelligent 
strategy.  Smart voters who realize their edge candidate will lose in the 
final runoff will abandon their first choice and vote for the 
centrist.  It's just easier and requires less guesswork on the voter's part 
with a good Condorcet method.

>Domination by any single party be it of the left, right or centre is not a 
>good thing.

I'm sure Alex would agree.  The point was simply that, if you had to pick a 
party that was going to be disproportionately represented, you'd want it to 
be the most moderate party.  IRV (and plurality for that matter) can 
produce disproportionate results that swing wildly from too far left to too 
far right.

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