[EM] To Bill Lewis Clark, re: Approval, CR, & IRV

Bill Lewis Clark wclark at xoom.org
Mon Jan 19 13:49:02 PST 2004

David Gamble wrote:

> I'd agree almost entirely with the points you've made about strategic
> voting  and the likelihood that people will use strategic voting. Most
> people on the  EM list, I think, will disagree with you (particularly
> Approval supporters).  This is because Approval starts to fail badly as
> a method when people stop using  strategy and start approving all the
> candidates they like.

Well, that's not very sporting of them. :)

Seriously though, this should really be an empirical issue that could be
determined through some research.  While it's fun and all to argue our
personal hunches, I'd be interested in seeing some actual studies.

For my part, I'd mainly been basing *my* hunch on various arguments I've
had with people over the years.  In my experience, there are a lot of
people who are downright hostile to the whole notion of strategic voting
-- and many of them don't vote, precisely because of this.  They got sick
of being given a hard time for voting their conscience, so they finally
decided not to bother anymore.

Just the other day, I had a lengthy discussion in email with one of my
friends over a hypothetical Cardinal Ratings vote between Gore, Nader, and
Bush.  He'd said that he would have voted Nader:10, Gore:7, and Bush:0. 
Nothing I could say could convince him that he should change his rating
for Gore.  He's not a stupid guy, either (he went to graduate school at
Stanford, and used to teach at UC Berkeley.)

Some people just consider sincere voting a matter of principle.

-Bill Clark

Dennis Kucinich for President in 2004

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