[EM] STV district magnitude

matt mg at tidalwave.net
Thu Jul 17 22:48:06 PDT 2003

It is not true that 1/120 of the vote gets a seat. It is %1.5 minimum 
(almost double 1/120). Also, surplus votes are redistributed 
proportionality according to the size of the various parties, with the 
exception that parties can make public redistribution agreements with each 
other prior to the election. 2,500 eligible voter signatures, a platform, 
and a list of candidates are required for a party to compete.
Elections for the Knesset are held when any of the following happens: 
Knesset rejects the list of ministers proposed by the prime minister, 61 
Knesset members vote no-confidence in the prime minister, no budget is 
agreed upon within 3 months of start of fiscal year, the Knesset votes to 
dissolve itself, with the president's consent the prime minister resigns 
and dissolves the parliament.
An election for prime minister is called if 80 (2/3) or more Knesset 
members vote for election, if majority of Knesset votes against prime 
minister following conviction for offense categorized as moral turpitude, 
if prime minister fails to appoint minimum eight ministers, if prime 
minister is permanently unable to function as such (death or disability), 
if prime minister resigns.

James wrote:
Israel uses closed party list in one national district. This is the
worst possible combination of all PR systems. Any group that can secure 
1/120th of the national vote will get a seat in the Knesset. This give 
representation to very small groups which makes it possible for the 
extremes of the political spectrum to gain representation. The system does 
not encourage them to seek any accommodation with those of less extreme 
views. Allied to this is the effect WITHIN parties of the closed list. The 
candidates of a minority faction within a party may be included on the 
party's list to ensure that the faction's supporters vote for the party, 
but those candidates will be placed well down the closed list so that they 
have no chance of election. To overcome this, the faction splits off to 
form its own party, when its candidates will, of course, be at the top of 
its own list. If it can secure at least 1/120th of the national vote, it 
will get at least one of its candidates elected. This is what has happened 
over many years in Israel.

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