# [EM] Declaration of Election-Method Experts and Enthusiasts

Peter Zbornik pzbornik at gmail.com
Wed Aug 31 11:46:55 PDT 2011

```Hi Richard,

I am sending a P.S. to my P.S. below.
I hope the message got through despite the bad English in the first part of
my email below.
If not, please let me know, and I will try to explain further.

I wrote below:

"I think the reform of a two round system could take two different paths:
1) a three round system where a second run-off is held between the
runoff winner in the second round and the
Condorcet/Bucklin/Approval/Score winner from the first round, if the
Condorcet/Bucklin/Approval/Score winner would be different from the
two run-off candidates."

I would like elaborate this proposal a little.
Call the Condorcet/Bucklin/Approval/Score winner K.
Assume K is different from the two second round runoff candidates R1 and R2.
The third round could make use of the same ballot paper as the second round,
by making the voter first vote between R1 and R2 (the normal runoff in the
second round).

Then the voter would make two more choices:
Between R1 and K (i.e the question would be: if R1 would win the runoff with
R2 would you prefer R1 or K as president (or chairman/leader etc.)?)
Between R2 and K (i.e the question would be: if R2 would win the runoff with
R1 would you prefer R2 or K as president (or chairman/leader etc.)?)

If R1 would win the second round runoff, then the votes R1 vs K would be
counted as the third round votes.
If R2 would win the second round runoff, then the votes R2 vs K would be
counted as the third round votes.

The same informtion could be encoded in a ranked ballot with R1, R2 and K,
but this could maybe fool some voters to think that the same method was used
in the third round as the method for selecting K in the first round - this
is just a minor detail.

The first round ballot could be either a ranked ballot, or a ballot with a
FPTP (bullet vote) ballot part on one side and a ranked ballot part on the
second side (a double-vote ballot). The double-vote ballot would enable the
voter to bullet vote for a different candidate than he would give his first
preference to on the ranked ballot part of the ballot, which might be
optimal if different voting tactics are used for both elections, or if the
voter cannot make up his mind between two of the candidates and would like
to see them both in the combined second/third round.

The first-round ballot could also be used in the two round election to
reform the FPTP system.

I would endorse this three-round system as a good way to reform runoff
elections, like the French presidential elections, which is likely to get
needed political support. The runoff winner meets the
Condorcet/Bucklin/Approval/Score winner and the voter only has to vote
twice, so it is difficult to see why a voter would not like this expansion
of the current system.

A footnote: a similar construct is found on the ballot for
constitutional referendums in Switzerland, I think.
There is a proposal of constitutional change to be voted on, and
a "compromise" proposal from the Swiss government or Parliament too (I don't
remember which).
First the voter votes between "change the constitution" Yes/No
If the voter votes "Yes" then he has to select between the proposed change
and the proposal from the government/parliament.
Then, if "change the constitution" gets a majority, then a second round is
held between the two different proposals.

Best regards
Peter Zborník

On Wed, Aug 31, 2011 at 10:43 AM, Peter Zbornik <pzbornik at gmail.com> wrote:

> Hi Richard,
>
> I am sending a small P.S. to clarify one of the ideas in my email below.
>
> I think that the most viable transfer from an "old" one-round
> single-winner election system to a "new" system. Goes through a two
> round system, where the  winner of the election in the "old" system
> meets the winner in the "new" system. This is the track for changes of
> voting system, which I think will have the biggest chance to get
> political support. A FPTP system would thus be reformed so that, the
> FPTP winner would meet the Condorcet/Approval/Score/Bucklin winner in
> the second round, if the two winners would be different.
>
> I think the reform of a two round system could take two different paths:
> 1) a three round system where a second run-off is held between the
> runoff winner in the second round and the
> Condorcet/Bucklin/Approval/Score winner from the first round, if the
> Condorcet/Bucklin/Approval/Score winner would be different from the
> two run-off candidates.
> 2) a two-round system, where the FPTP winner would meet the
> Condorcet/Bucklin/Approval/Score winner if they are different,
> otherwise we would have a normal run-off.
>
> In theory one might imagine a two-round election second round with
> three candidates, but then the second-round election system would not
> be a run-off election, which would maket the system politically more
> difficult to pass.
>
> Best regards
> Peter Zbornik
>

On 8/31/11, Peter Zbornik <pzbornik at gmail.com> wrote:
> Hi Richard,
>
> maybe a second round could take place between the winners of competing
> methods, say Schulze winner vs Approval or  Bucklin winner or any
> other endorsed method. This would allow for election-methods
> "competitions", and could address potential weaknesses of each method.
> When one of the method would generate a "bad" winner, then the other
> method could still give a "good" winner. For instance, if the Schulze
> method would generate a winner noone has heard of before (the dark
> horse), then in the second round, when he meets the Bucklin or
> Approval winner, he or she might lose the second round, after new
> details of his/her political past come to public knowledge due to the
> increased attention given. The election methods should be different
> for this approach to work. The obvious downside of this approach is
> increased complexity and thus less public support. With this method
> IRV might be used as one of the methods, or the old method could be
> used against the new method.
>
> A second proposal: since most single winner methods have their
> multiple-winner counterpart, the first round could proprtionally elect
> two (or more) candidates, between which the second round would take
> place. This solution would use one method for both rounds, thus
> decrease complexity compared to the first proposal; the solution would
> not require political party candidates; it would provide a solution
> for the French presidential elections. The downside of this system is
> that some of the multiple winner versions of the single-winner methods
> are not used anywhere and exist only on paper and/or in vote-counting
> software.
> Example: 1st round: Schulze-STV elects two candidates for the runoff.
> 2nd round: Schulze-Condorcet is used.
>
> Personally I think the issue of one vs two rounds of elections is a
> neglected issue. For instance, if the Brittish liberals would have
> chosen a run-off elections as the alternative to FPTP instead of IRV
> (AV), then I think they would have found support in the referendum.
>
> A second issue, which I think the statement does not address, is the
> minimal number of seats in each constituency, or in other words, the
> number of regional constituencies in the election to one body, like
> the parliament. If we have a 200 seat parliament and each constituency
> has only two seats, elected proportionally, then we have a
> proportional election system, with a quota of 33%. This is not a
> system I can endorse. I would rather endorse low (max., say 5%) and
> would prefer no quotas, i.e. the quota equals the votes needed for one
> seat with only one constituency - around 0.5% for a 200 seat election.
> Using a party list system, there might be constituencies which do not
> hinder proportional representation, provided that there is a "National
> constituency" of sufficient size, which makes sure that each party is
> proportionally represented in the elected body (Swedish election
> system). The national constituency would level-out any disproportional
> representation of the parties, which might arise from the division of
> the electorate into constituencies. Maybe a similar system could be
> (or most probably has already been) constructed for open lists. The
> voter would cast a vote in his/her constituency and at the same time a
> vote in the national constituency. Question is then how to achieve a
> proportional representation for open lists balancing the regional
> constituencies and the national one. I think it is possible and should
> not be too difficult but don't know how to do it.
>
> Maybe these questions have already been discussed.
>
> Best regards
> Peter Zbornik
>
> On 8/30/11, Richard Fobes <ElectionMethods at votefair.org> wrote:
>> Here is what I've just written for the new section titled "Multiple
>> rounds of voting":
>>
>> ----------- begin ------------
>>
>> In highly competitive elections, multiple rounds of voting are needed to
>> eliminate the weakest candidates so that attention can be focused on
>> electing one of the most popular candidates.  Our supported election
>> methods work as described for two rounds of voting if the first round of
>> voting elects a single winner from each political party, and the second
>> round chooses from among those winners.
>>
>> However, different counting methods are needed if the same voters vote
>> in both rounds. There are election methods that handle such cases, and
>> they use the better ballots we support. However, we have not yet
>> analyzed this category of counting methods sufficiently to express
>> support for any specific methods.
>>
>> We do strongly agree that single-mark ballots must not be used in any
>> round of voting. More specifically, just as the candidate with the most
>> first-choice votes is not necessarily the most popular, and the
>> candidate with the fewest first-choice votes is not necessarily the
>> least popular, the candidate with the second-most first-choice votes is
>> not necessarily second-most popular, and the candidate with the
>> second-fewest votes is not necessarily the second-least popular.
>>
>> Also we agree that "open primary" elections are not fair. In this
>> approach, the candidates who are identified as "most popular",
>> regardless of political-party affiliation, progress to the next round.
>> This approach fails to consider that the majority of voters who support
>> the most-popular candidate are likely to be the same majority of voters
>> who support the second-most popular candidate -- unless the counting
>> method specifically compensates for this redundant influence. The
>> remaining voters, who may almost be a majority, can end up with only
>> getting to choose between the two candidates who are preferred by the
>> majority. Expressed another way, the words "most popular" are ambiguous
>> in the context of choosing which candidates deserve to progress to
>> another round of voting.
>>
>> ----------- end ------------
>>
>> I'm sure I'm missing some important additional considerations, but they
>> aren't coming to me at the moment, so I'll tap into your brains to help
>> refine this section.
>>
>> Of course we aren't offering a fair way to handle French presidential
>> (?) first-round elections (in terms of which two candidates should move
>> on to the final runoff election), but we have nothing specific we would
>> agree on, right?
>>
>> Richard Fobes
>>
>>
>>
>> ----
>> Election-Methods mailing list - see http://electorama.com/em for list
>> info
>>
>
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