[EM] Can anyone help with straight-ahead Condorcet language?

Forest Simmons forest.simmons21 at gmail.com
Wed Sep 1 19:59:00 PDT 2021

If it were up to me, I would use the fall-back method itself to seamlessly
finesse these niceties, and then remark that it obviously satisfies the
Condorcet and therefore Majority criteria. Here's the complete
definition/description of BTR-IRV in that succinct form:

Determine the winning candidate by loser elimination from the marked ranked
choice ballots as follows:

While there remain two or more uneliminated candidates, eliminate (by
crossing out and transferring votes from) the head-to-head loser of the
pairwise contest between the two candidates with the fewest transferred
votes. [In a pairwise contest the winner is the one ranked ahead of the
other on more ballots than not ... the other one is the loser of the
pairwise contest.]

After the eliminations are complete elect the remaining candidate.

Remark: this procedure never eliminates a candidate with more than half of
the initial votes (or transferred votes at later stages), nor does it ever
eliminate any candidate that is unbeaten pairwise. In other words, neither
a Majority Candidate nor a so called "Condorcet Candidate" can lose under
these rules.

As you can see, this concise approach obviates the need for breaking apart
the description of the method into steps 1, 2, 3, and 4.

The details of the construction and precinct summation of the pairwise and
win/loss/tie matrices should be relegated to the technicalities section
along with tie breaking rules, etc.

El mié., 1 de sep. de 2021 8:29 a. m., robert bristow-johnson <
rbj at audioimagination.com> escribió:

> responding to both Forest and Kristofer...
> > On 09/01/2021 6:13 AM Kristofer Munsterhjelm <km_elmet at t-online.de>
> wrote:
> >
> >
> > On 9/1/21 6:44 AM, Forest Simmons wrote:
> > > The version of point (3) that you are not satisfied with:
> well, i am not sure i said i was not satisfied with it.  but, in truth, i
> am not entirely satisfied with it.  but what i am fishing for are ideas to
> make it better.
> > > (3) If no candidate receives a majority of first preferences, a
> > > Condorcet-consistent retabulation shall be performed by the presiding
> > > election officer.  The candidate, who is the Condorcet winner, is
> > > elected if the rankings on all of the ballots indicate that this one
> > > candidate defeats, by a simple majority of voter preferences, all
> other
> > > candidates when compared in turn with each other individual
> candidate.
> > > A selected candidate defeats another candidate by a simple majority
> when
> > > the number of ballots marked ranking the selected candidate higher
> than
> > > the other candidate exceeds the number of ballots marked to the
> contrary.
> > >
> > > My suggestion:
> > >
> > > (3) If it is determined that no single candidate is ranked ahead of
> > > every other candidate on more than half of the valid ballots,
> what's a "valid" ballot?
> > > then
> > > pairwise tallies of head-to-head comparisons of candidates will be
> > > examined to verify the existence (or lack thereof) of a candidate who
> is
> > > ranked ahead of any other individual candidate on more ballots than
> not,
> > > i.e. on more than half of the ballots where one of them is ranked
> ahead
> > > (above) the other. If such a pairwise (head-to-head) beats-all
> > > candidate exists, then it shall be elected.
> i sure as hell am staying away from the term "beats-all candidate".  i
> don't think "pairwise champion" or even my neologism "consistent majority
> candidate" will do either.
> >
> > If we can define terms, then perhaps something like this would be
> shorter?
> >
> the form of the language i wrote is in the form of the IRV language that
> was put on the ballot for voters to vote on.  i added a few defining
> terms.  but the real legislation **will** break out definitions into a
> section of the bill.  see page 6 in
> https://legislature.vermont.gov/Documents/2022/Docs/BILLS/H-0236/H-0236%20As%20Introduced.pdf
> but the IRV template language (which is page 3 of
> https://legislature.vermont.gov/Documents/2022/Docs/BILLS/H-0448/H-0448%20As%20Introduced.pdf)
> looked more like this with some important definitions/clarification is at
> the bottom here.  That language is what I modified for the BTR-IRV but I am
> trying to see what it might look like for a straight Condorcet election.
> > - A candidate is considered to be the victor of a head-to-head against
> > another candidate if the first candidate is ranked ahead of the second
> > candidate on more than half of the ballots.
> "more than half of the ballots"???  as in an *absolute* majority??
> > - If a candidate is determined to be a victor in every head-to-head
> > against another candidate, that candidate shall be elected.
> > - Otherwise, [fallback method here].
> >
> > I don't know if legislative language allows for intermediate definitions
> > like that, though.
> the final legislation will actually put in needed definitions early in the
> language.  but this template is more abbreviated.
> Now, I understand that we could spell out the pairing of candidates, but
> then it starts looking like a mathematics paper:
> "The ballot shall list N candidates (including Write-in) and there shall
> be N(N-1)/2 unique pairings of candidates (including combined write-in).
> In each pairing of two candidates, if the number of ballots ranking a
> selected candidate higher than the other candidate is less than the number
> of ballots marked to the contrary, then the selected candidate is marked as
> defeated.  The candidate who is not defeated in any pairing shall be
> elected."
> What I am looking for is language without outside references (like
> references to the Schulze method or Tideman Ranked-Pairs), without
> neologisms, and can define the method procedurally in normal English.
> I confess that what I want to do is present legislators with straight
> Condorcet language along with the BTV-IRV language to compare to the IRV
> language (below) in the same template form.
> Thank you, everyone.
> --
> r b-j . _ . _ . _ . _ rbj at audioimagination.com
> "Imagination is more important than knowledge."
> .
> .
> .
> The IRV language slightly modified by me to define and clarify a couple of
> terms:
> _________________________________________________________________________
> All elections of [office] shall be by ballot, using a system of
> ranked-choice voting without a separate runoff election. The presiding
> election officer shall implement a ranked-choice voting protocol according
> to these guidelines:
>   (1) The ballot shall give voters the option of ranking candidates in
> order of preference. Lower ordinal preference shall be considered higher
> rank and the candidate marked as first preference is considered ranked
> highest. Equal ranking of candidates shall not be allowed. Any candidate
> not marked with a preference shall be considered as ranked lower than every
> candidate marked with a preference.
>   (2) If a candidate receives a majority (over 50 percent of all ballots)
> of first preferences, that candidate is elected.
>   (3) If no candidate receives a majority of first preferences, an instant
> runoff retabulation shall be performed by the presiding election officer.
> The instant runoff retabulation shall be conducted in sequential rounds. A
> "continuing candidate" is defined as a candidate that has not been defeated
> in any previous round. Initially, no candidate is defeated and all
> candidates begin as continuing candidates.
>   (4) In each round, every ballot shall count as a single vote for
> whichever continuing candidate the voter has ranked highest. The candidate
> with fewest votes is defeated in the current round.
>   (5) The aforementioned instant runoff retabulation, eliminating one
> candidate each round, shall be repeated until only two candidates remain.
> The remaining candidate then receiving the greatest number of votes is
> elected.
>   (6) The [governing jurisdiction] may adopt additional regulations
> consistent with this subsection to implement these standards.
> _________________________________________________________________________
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