[EM] lobbyists not legislators; PR and the median

Kevin Venzke stepjak at yahoo.fr
Tue Jul 22 19:09:02 PDT 2003

I'm interested in this issue's implications regarding other methods:

 --- Stephane Rouillon <stephane.rouillon at sympatico.ca> a écrit : 
> Geographical "closerness" is a bad thing.  Yes in one hand it gives
> an elected representative that knows the district better than others.
> But on the other hand, it attracts several dysfunctional behaviors. It
> attracts lobbyist not legislators. It attracts people who want to get
> the best to their local community, at the detriment of the country or
> other districts nerby if necessary.  It institutionalizes ghettos, purshasable
> votes for the next metro station or the next plant subvention. I agree, it
> worked like that for decades everywhere. But if a system can offer
> elections using principles and not interests, ideas not fashions, should'nt
> you consider this more closely.

I suspect that these "behaviors" occur when candidates from the same area of
the spectrum are competing against each other...  For instance, with SNTV in 
Japan or Taiwan, or potentially STV and open-list methods.  There may be no policy
significant enough to campaign on, so candidates need some other draw.

Would this happen with Condorcet?  Assume every candidate aims perfectly in
identifying and appealing to the median voter.  In terms of policy, all the 
candidates become clones.  Will the candidates be content to let it be a 
popularity contest, or will they identify some shady, undesirable way of getting 

On a different subject, I'm wary of PR generally, because I'm not confident that
the median voter is likely to be represented...  Do "median parties" really exist?  
I want the electoral (and constitutional) method to guarantee that the median voter 
has a veto.  (If it were possible, I would like to give a veto to every voter in
a certain central chunk.)

Kevin Venzke
stepjak at yahoo.fr

Do You Yahoo!? -- Une adresse @yahoo.fr gratuite et en français !
Yahoo! Mail : http://fr.mail.yahoo.com

More information about the Election-Methods mailing list