# [EM] Election-Methods Digest, Vol 106, Issue 2

Forest Simmons fsimmons at pcc.edu
Tue Apr 2 15:01:59 PDT 2013

```Jobst has suggested that ballots be used to elicit voter's "consensus
thresholds" for the various candidates.

If your consensus threshold for candidate X is 80 percent, that means that
you would be willing to support candidate X if more than 80 percent of the
other voters were also willing to support candidate X, but would forbid
your vote from counting towards the election of X if the total support for
X would end up short of 80 percent.

The higher the threshold that you give to X the more reluctant you are to
join in a consensus, but as long as your threshold t for X is less than
than 100 percent, a sufficiently large consensus (i.e. larger than t
percent) would garner your support, as long as it it is the largest
consensus that qualifies for your support.

A threshold of zero signifies that you are willing to support X no matter
how small the consensus, as long as no larger consensus qualifies for your
support.

I suggest that we use score ballots on a scale of 0 to 100 with the
convention that the score and the threshold for a candidate are related by
s+t=100.

So given the score ballots, here's how the method is counted:

For each candidate X let p(X) be the largest number p between 0 and 100
such that p(X) ballots award a score strictly greater than 100-p to
candidate X.

The candidate X with the largest value of p(X) wins the election.

If there are two or more candidates that share this maximum value of p,
then choose from the tied set the candidate ranked the highest in the
following order:

Candidate X precedes candidate Y if X is scored above zero on more ballots
than Y.  If this doesn't break the tie, then X precedes Y if X is scored
above one on more ballots than Y.  If that still doesn't break the tie,
then X precedes Y if X is scored above two on more ballots than Y, etc.

In the unlikely event that the tie isn't broken before you get to 100,
choose the winner from the remaining tied candidates by random ballot.

The psychological value of this method is that it appeals to our natural
community spirit which includes a willingness to go along with the group
consensus when the consensus is strong enough, as long as there is no hope
for a better consensus, and as long as it isn't a candidate that we would
rate at zero.