[EM] The Global Fight For Electoral Justice: A Primer

Kristofer Munsterhjelm km_elmet at t-online.de
Sun Jan 1 11:16:07 PST 2017

On 01/01/2017 07:06 PM, ElectionMethods wrote:
> Regarding introduction of PR in Europe, many years ago a German
> housemate told me that PR for post-war West Germany was partly designed
> by academics in the United States who wanted to overcome the
> unfairnesses of U.S. elections (i.e. two-party dominance, and unfairness
> of gerrymandering).

It's interesting that at least after Japan in WWII, then wherever the US 
has had the chance to design the template for the democratic system, 
they've chosen proportional representation. As far as I recall, even the 
elections in Iraq uses PR.

> (I presume closed-list PR is dominant in Europe because many members of
> parliament would be unlikely to get re-elected under open-list PR.)

If the "old parties heading off the socialist challenge" theory is 
correct, it would also explain why closed list PR is so common; the old 
parties weren't in it for egalitarian purposes, but rather as a 
necessary compromise. Open list would not have been required in such a 
scenario, just interparty PR. The only situation that would force open 
list would be if closed list would have led to too mediocre candidates 
within the old parties and thus to voters flocking to the socialists anyway.

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