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View Diary: MN-Sen: And still closing (183 comments)

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  •  why not preferential voting? (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    canyonrat, prose, Losty

    It would accomplish the same purpose without the need for a separate election?  You know, as is done in Australia.

    "The state has no place in the bedrooms of the nation." - Pierre Trudeau

    by fishhead on Fri Nov 07, 2008 at 05:15:06 PM PST

    [ Parent ]

    •  I'm not sure I understand preferential voting (0+ / 0-)

      Is this where you rank all the candidates in terms of first choice, second, third etc?

      •  yes (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        Pierce County, WA uses it

        The ballot of say 3 ccandidates starts with FIRST CHOICE listing all three, followed by SECOND and THIRD choices will all candidates each time. I guess FIRST CHOICE gets 3x weight, and SECOND CHOICE 2x weight?

        •  okay, sounds good (0+ / 0-)

          as long as I don't have to pick a second or third choice if one of them is a Republican :)

          Although I'm not so sure about weighting the votes, seems it would be better to count them in the same way as instant runoff voting.  If my first choice candidate comes in third overall, then my vote goes to my second choice, and so on.

        •  There's no "weighting" (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          There's a number of different ways to do it, but a common way is known as "instant run-off", aka IRV.  It's what we use in San Francisco for city offices.  Basically, if no one gets a majority, the candidate with the fewest first-choice votes is eliminated, and has all the second and third-choice votes allocated on their the ballots where they were first-choice.  If there is still no clear majority, then this process is repeated until there is one (usually it only takes one).

          IRV isn't perfect; it's possible to violate monotonicity with it, which is a theoretical principle of elections I don't completely understand.  But in practice it appeals more to common sense than the alternative method known as Condorcet, which uses a strange pairwise elimination system for counting instead.  It's probably just a failure to explain -- as it is, people in SF are perpetually confused about IRV.

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