[EM] Re: Testing 1 2 3

Dgamble997 at aol.com Dgamble997 at aol.com
Sat Jan 3 07:42:01 PST 2004

James you wrote:

>I know it is common in modelling exercises to assume that all electors vote 
>party ticket", but that is not what a surprising number of real electors do 
in real >elections. I have looked only at the "ballot papers" for the Meath 
constituency of the >2002 Dáil Éireann STV-PR election, but the voting patterns 
have some major >lessons for party managers - and voting system modellers.

>There were 14 candidates for 5 seats and some 64,00 voters. The two largest
>parties (FF and FG) both put up 3 candidates; all the other parties put up 
only 1; >there were also some non-party independents. FF received the most 
first >preferences. About half of those first preferences went to one candidate. 
But of >those who voted "1" for that candidate, only 44% voted "1", "2", "3" 
for FF's three >candidates. 35% of those voters were "lost" at the second 
preference and a further >21% were lost at the third preference. Of course, many of 
those voters "came back" >to FF at a subsequent preference, but it does show 
that the "party ticket" is a gross
>over-simplification as a model for real voter behaviour.

I reply:

 In some political cultures there is a greater tendency to vote the party 
ticket than others. I have just been looking at the transfer patterns for the 
Bass division of the Tasmanian House of Assembly for the 2002 state election for 
the 3 largest parties. For the Labor party on each transfer of surplus/ 
elimination of a candidate between 83 and 90% of the votes transferred to other 
Labor candidates. For the Green party between 87 and 91% of votes transferred to 
continuing candidates of the same party. For the Liberal  party the figure was 
90- 96%.


Also in Australian Senate elections with "above" and "below" the line voting  
you can sometimes find that over 99% of a candidate's surplus transfers to 
the next candidate of the same party.


David Gamble



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