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

Abd ul-Rahman Lomax abd at lomaxdesign.com
Fri Mar 9 15:04:24 PST 2012

At 07:36 PM 3/8/2012, Kevin Venzke wrote:
>Hi Mike,
>I don't think Approval-Runoff can get off the ground since it's too
>apparent that a party could nominate two candidates (signaling that one
>is just a pawn to aid the other) and try to win by grabbing both of the
>finalist positions. If this happened regularly it would be just an
>expensive version of FPP.

Number one. This objection does not apply to nonpartisan elections.

Number two. The strongest factor in elections is positive name 
recognition. That's become obvious. By running two candidates, you 
are diluting name recognition. If you have one, you might win. With 
two, quite possibly not. Risky strategy.

Number three. The strategy assumes that there will be no rivalry 
between the two candidates. Even if they are in cahoots, their 
supporters may not be.

Number four. Who gets the campaign funds?

Number five. Others can play the same game, if it's a real strategy. 
I don't think it is.

Number six. If this is a partisan election, who gets the party slot? 
The strategy could badly backfire, as supporters of the non-party 
candidate decide not to support the official party candidate, after 
all, the party made a bad choice. No, the tradition is strong, and 
there are strong reasons for it, that a party unites on a candidate. 
It's more powerful.

Number seven. If both candidates make it into the runoff, very good 
chance one of them would win anyway. This means that they are top 
two, really. If this is nonpartisan, very difficult to reverse that.

Number eight. You might be able to figure out a scenario where this 
makes some sense.

Now, compare that scenario with the real and known hazard of center squeeze.

Besides, once we are Counting All the Votes, a ranked version of 
approval becomes far better.

>SODA actually does allow you to not delegate via checking a box. But
>a version that required delegation might be interesting because it
>wouldn't require an "approval plus checkbox" ballot, it would just need
>a vote-for-one ballot.

My preference, in fact. This is the simplest way to implement Asset. 

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