[EM] Obvious Approval advantages. SODA. Approval-Runoff.

MIKE OSSIPOFF nkklrp at hotmail.com
Thu Mar 8 09:57:29 PST 2012

It's well known that Approval is precinct-summable. Approval also has the easiest, simplest, and least expensive hand-count, of any
method other than Plurality. That means that Approval can have the security of a handcount. Even if it's somehow possible to make
a computer-count secure, the security of a handcount is easy, already well-established and well-known.

Of course Approval would be the obvious thing to replace Plurality with, in state and national elections. 

What about local municipal elections, where Runoff is what is currently in use? Plainly the simplest, most modest change would
be to replace Runoff with Approval-Runoff. Just do Approval (instead of vote-for-1) in the 1st balloting of a Runoff election, and then hold the runoff as
usual, between the top two votegetters.

That would almost surely violate FBC. Voting for favorite, F, in addition to compromise, C, in the 1st election could cause F to edge
C out of the runoff. But maybe F can't win the runoff, but C would have. So someone worse than C wins.

So Approval-Runoff is no good as a _destination_ method. But it's still acceptable as a
_transitional_ method: It could bring some public attention to Approval, give Approval some precedent, which might enable
its adoption for state &/or national elections. Or maybe that would have to happen via the mechanism of Approval-Runoff being
replaced by Approval in municipal elections, where the municipal Approval is what provides precedent for state and national

Not that this is very important, because Approval-Runoff, failing FBC as it does, is only a transitional proposal, but the
options available for Approval could also be offered in Runoff's 1st balloting in which Approval replaces vote-for-one. But of course
I wouldn't suggest bothering to even mention options for Approval-Runoff, since it's no good as a destination method, due to its
FBC failure.

I merely mention Approval-Runoff because it could maybe facilitate earlier adoption of genuine Approval, municipally, &/or state
or federal.

The name SODA refers to Approval elections in which delegation is the only option. I speak of delegation as one of various options
for Approval elections, most of which are mutually compatible for availability in the same Approval election. I refer to that as
the delegation option, reserving "SODA" for a method consisting of Approval with no added options other than delegation. I'd prefer
also offering and making available all the options I've named, such as AOC, AOCBucklin, MTAOC, MCAOC (those of course include the
options of voting ordinary ABucklin, MTA or MCA ballots too). And the delegation option too.

The delegation option would be for people who want to leave it all to their favorite candidate. It also automatically avoids C/D, if the
various delegates can negotiate before they use their delegated votes, and after they have the initial ballot-results, and if their negotiated agreements are public
and binding.

Mike Ossipoff

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