[EM] Re Raph Frank wrt 3-seat LR Hare and RV for US Senators by proxy.

David L Wetzell wetzelld at gmail.com
Tue Feb 7 11:20:22 PST 2012

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Raph Frank <raphfrk at gmail.com>
To: election-methods at lists.electorama.com
Date: Tue, 7 Feb 2012 10:29:07 +0000
Subject: Re: [EM] Re Raph Frank wrt 3-seat LR Hare and RV for US Senators
by proxy.
On Tue, Feb 7, 2012 at 1:40 AM, David L Wetzell <wetzelld at gmail.com> wrote:
> dlw: There are ways to increase intra-party discipline for major parties
> prevent their fragmentation and
> help them to coordinate the making of serious needed changes that perhaps
> were spotlighted by 3rd parties.

I think if there is PR, then there will be more than just 2 parties.

dlw:I argue that a "less-is-more" PR will more importantly prevent one
party from dominating a state/nat'l politics.

RF:I am not sure how things would go if there is PR for one house and a 2
party system for the other.

dlw: Contested duopoly?

RF: In Australia, there seems to be exactly that.  Smaller parties do get
elected to the Senate.  However, it is the IRV (2 party) House that
has the power to elect the PM.

dlw: The diff here is that I'm advocating for the use of PR in the more
popular legislative body, where too often single-winner elections are not
competitive and for the use of single-winner elections in the "Senate"
where the elections are more often competitive so that the use of PR would
likely reduce the number of elections.

It is less clear how it would work if they shared power in a
presidential system.

dlw: I argue that the strength of the US presidency and regular
presidential elections has the effect of building up our two-party system.
This is why I take as a given that there tend to be 2 bigger major parties
and not as many serious candidates in "single-winner elections".  This in
turn tends to
reduce the import of the diffs among the wide variety of single-winner

> dlw: I think it's a states' rights matter and people shd insist that most
> it get decided in the more proportional state legislative branch.

The constitution says that the State Legislature decides, so
restricting it to one house by State law might not be acceptable.

However, having State law specify the procedure is probably OK (though
having a house agree with less than a majority might not be).

A rule that has the legislature meet as a single house for making the
decision should have no problem.  That gets mostly the same result if
the more representative house is larger.

Ofc, I am not a lawyer, and that is just what I think would be a
reasonable interpretation.

dlw: I think state legislature cd apply to one branch more so and the other
less so...
but that's not crucial and we're obviously a ways a way from something like

I could pose the question to an Election Law site I'm on at LinkedIn,
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