[EM] Is strategic voting a bad thing, really?

wclark at xoom.org wclark at xoom.org
Mon Apr 5 10:29:02 PDT 2004

Recently I've come to question the accepted wisdom that strategic voting
is a bad thing that should be minimized.

Obviously certain election methods have undesirable consequences when
voters cast ballots strategically rather than sincerely -- but should the
blame really be placed on the strategic voting, or on the method itself
for constraining the choice of effective strategies available to the

Are there cases where the winner according to strategically cast ballots
is a better choice than the winner according to sincere ballots?  IRV
instantly comes to mind, since it seems to suffer from a multitude of
problems even when voters cast their ballots sincerely (so much so, that
I'm led to wonder if widespread strategic voting might actually *improve*
the results in some instances.)  What about other systems?

What work has been done in this area, which might serve as a starting
point for further research?

-Bill Clark

Ralph Nader for US President in 2004

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