[EM] Conceiving a Democratic Electoral Process

Don Hoffard dchoffard at frontier.com
Fri Jul 13 23:41:14 PDT 2012

Good evening Fred


Gohlke: . (If) a radical third party had formed, I think it's effect

        would have moved the result closer to an extreme.


Gohlke:   May we change this to:  "If you change the voting method

          the major parties will be weaker and non-major party 

          candidates will be stronger."?  If so, I agree


[assuming a Condorcet voting system]. It is true that more extreme parties
would increase in numbers and first round votes.  Why because they can
always have a second choice, the L or C candidates, or the M the
moderate/non-partisan as their third choice which would win most of the

The non-major parties would increase in numbers (stronger in numbers yes,
but even less likely to be elected) and at the expense of the two major
parties but still the moderate (non-partisan) would have a greater chance of


Gohlke: In your original post, you equated M to non-partisan/independent and

        spoke of the M (or Moderate) candidate in a way that suggests there
is a party

        of moderates or independents.


Most candidates running as an independent are "non-partisan".  Although
there are "Independent Parties" that purport to be middle of the road (M).
All I'm saying is that a moderate non-partisan candidate has a greater
chance to be elected with a Condorcet election system. In
first-past-the-post voting system the middle tends to be squeezed out and
results in a two party dominated system. 


Gohlke: I tend to think that those who join a party (even of moderates or

                     independents) are no longer non-partisan.


You are right if you join a party, by definition, you are no longer
non-partisan.  However there are a lot of moderates and independents who are


Gohlke:  . (comments) referring to the "Definition of non-partisan"


There are different classifications of people:

1)      Total population  (which is not relevant to the discussion).

2)      Total voting age population

3)      Registered voters

4)      Voters


Now, technically all those in the voting age population that are not
registered to vote are "non-partisan" (i.e. not in a party).  But this is
not the normal definition of "non-partisan"

Generally when you register you must decide to be partisan or non-partisan
(although in some states you don't have to choose). Most people (standard
definition) would use this definition of non-partisan.

Using the standard definition the non-partisan's then they are NOT in the
majority.  Also in a General Election the non-partisan's are even a smaller
percent of those that vote.

However in the General election a registered partisan voter can vote for a
non-partisan candidate or even vote for the other major party candidate,
thus in effect all voters in the General Election are

The partisan/non-partisan definition only has relevant in the primaries. 


Gohlke: An electoral system that excludes over 80% of its people from the
process of selecting their

                  elected representatives cannot be called a democracy.


(Wikipedia) "Democracy is a political system based upon the  concept of
"rule by the people .who have . the right to hold some form of political

A county where the voting age population have the right to vote is
considered a democracy.

However I agree with you that it would be a much better democracy if more
people voted.


Don Hoffard



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