[OT] Voting systems [was Wrong ad on www.linux.org]

Jim Rootham jim.rootham-H217xnMUJC0sA/PxXw9srA at public.gmane.org
Sat Jul 3 05:18:44 UTC 2004

At 11:13 AM -0400 7/2/04, cbbrowne-HInyCGIudOg at public.gmane.org wrote:

>In effect, one of the prime problems with PR is that it eliminates the
>notion of representing a "geographical riding."
>What is usually proposed as an answer to that is to say that there will
>be some percentage of seats assigned geographically, and some assigned
>via PR.  The result is something that still won't be PR...

Let me describe what is actually being proposed, as opposed to what
people here think is being proposed.

The short name is regional mixed member proportional representation.

It works like this:  The country is divided into regions and the regions
are divided into ridings.   The regions get a total of seats higher than
the riding count (probably in the 1.25 - 1.5 times area).   Each party
nominates a candidate for each riding and a list of candidates for the
region.   Every voter votes twice, once for a local candidate and once
for a party.  The local candidates win on FPTP just like now.    The list
candidates get allocated to repair the proportionality.

So, a party that gets more riding seats than its total vote deserves
gets fewer list seats.  The size of the regions can be adjusted so that
a percentage cut off is not required, but every pary with seats has a
significant vote (probably about 5%, which means regions are about
20 seats).

It may not be proportional to a tenth of a percentage point, but it
comes to a pretty fair approximation.

>In the most recent election, we wouldn't see anything massively
>different from the mix we actually _do_ see, namely a Parliament that is
>_heavily_ divided on regional lines.

There is some regionality in this system, but that is intrinsic to Canada.
There would be Conservatives from Quebec (but not many) and NDP members
from Alberta (also not a lot).

>I'm not sure but that this might lead to the troubled Knesset-like
>building of weird coalitions controlled by the itty bitty parties that
>were the ones that had to be drawn in to fabricate the majority.

Israel is a unrepresentative example.

1) there are national lists, not regional ones
2) there is a very low minimum cutoff, so tiny parties survive.
3) Isreal is much more divided than Canada.  Isreal has no constitution
because they cannot agree on one.  Pace the separatists Canada is not
that divided.

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