[Election-Methods] Fwd: FYI - FairVote MN Responds to Lawsuit Against IRV

Dave Ketchum davek at clarityconnect.com
Wed Dec 26 18:36:40 PST 2007

On Wed, 26 Dec 2007 17:41:12 -0700 Kathy Dopp wrote:
>  Date: Wed, 26 Dec 2007 17:55:41 -0500
>>From: Dave Ketchum <davek at clarityconnect.com>
>>Subject: Re: [Election-Methods] RE : Re: Fwd: FYI - FairVote MN
>>        Responds        toLawsuit Against IRV
>>James' discussion of history leading up to IRV makes sense, and IRV often
>>doing counting second choices, etc., often resulting in better assignment
>>of winners.  Trouble is, often is not synonymous with always - leading to
>>some of us backing Condorcet for using the same ballot and basic thoughts
>>as IRV, but looking at all that the voter says.  Sample election
>>(admittedly biased):
>>       27 Bush
>>       26 Nader/Gore
>>       24 Paul/Gore
>>       23 Gore
>>Voters agree, 73-27, to not liking Bush.
>>IRV will first see that many Gore backers like Nader or Paul even better,
>>forget Gore, and let Bush win over Nader, a 27-26 "majority".  Note that
>>Nader backers, if they had suspected this outcome, could have omitted
>>voting for Nader or Paul.
>>Condorcet will see:
>>       73 Gore winning over 27 Bush
>>       47 Gore/26 Nader
>>       49 Gore/24 Paul
>>       27 Bush/26 Nader
>>       27 Bush/24 Paul
>>       26 Nader/24 Paul
> Dave,
> Well looks like I'm getting a quick lesson in the Condorcet method.
> I have to say that I like the Condorcet method better than IRV because
> it does seem to treat the ballots equally - as long as voters vote for
> the same number of candidates - but I still don't like it as much as a
> system that weights a voter's first choice more than a voter's second
> choice, and so forth.

Worth thought.  Still, without such, a voter uses highest rank as 
preferred above all others, and second highest rank as preferred above all 
except highest - do you really want more?

Voting for an equal number of candidates matters little, though you can 
express dislike by ranking many higher than the disliked.  If you are 
really trying to elect a candidate, you should run out of other preferred 
quickly - when might you really want to list 4 up front?  When might you 
care if you have voted for the same number of candidates as some other voter?
      Said another way:  When might you want to rank more than a couple 
above the unranked pack?  How can another voter gain an advantage by 
ranking many?  I want to permit the many, but see no actual value in using 
that permission.
> Question: I would think that most voters would vote for two candidates
> since that gives the voters essentially two votes for the one ballot,
> at least the way you've shown the tabulation.

Depends - just being able to name two candidates has no value unless a 
voter has a desire to do such.  In Gore/Nader/Bush:
      Bush voters usually will have no second choice for Bush losing.
      Nader backers almost certainly expect Nader to lose and want to 
offer Gore as backup.
      There could be useful choices of 3 or more candidates.
> Condorcet seems to treat all the choices of each voter the same also.
> I.e. If I vote for Nader/Paul - my votes for Nader and those for Paul
> count equally with each other. No ranking.

Looks like I was careless with my symbols.  I did intend for the first 
candidate listed to rank over what follows.

Condorcet normally also permits multiple candidates to rank equally with 
each other.  As to more likely symbols, ballots have to indicate in their 
own manner such as:
      Identical rank numbers mean equal rank.
      Different rank numbers indicate higher or lower (magnitude of 
difference should NOT matter - only direction).
> I prefer a weighted method where I can give my first choice a certain
> weight more than my second choice, but all the candidates I vote for
> are tabulated - so there are no "elimination rounds".

Perhaps helps to note that Condorcet counting is much as in a tournament. 
  Assuming that you have decided on A and B as your top ranking 
candidates, voting this will not affect their relationship to each other - 
you only control the race between them via A>B, A=B, and B>A.
> Kathy
  davek at clarityconnect.com    people.clarityconnect.com/webpages3/davek
  Dave Ketchum   108 Halstead Ave, Owego, NY  13827-1708   607-687-5026
            Do to no one what you would not want done to you.
                  If you want peace, work for justice.

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