AV - a modification? Watch

7he5haman
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Hey everyone!

I was showering this morning and the following idea of a modification to the AV system came into my head. (I wouldn't be surprised if someone's thought of it already. And yes. Showering. It's where are my relatively interesting thinking happens!)

In short: weighted votes.

The idea:

1st preference votes should count as one full vote.
2nds should count as half a vote.
3rds, a third.
4ths, a fouth.
5ths, a fifth.
And so on.*

EDIT: The structure of the AV system remains the same, however. It's just, when/if we come round to counting 2nd/3rd/4th preferences, they each count as a half/third/quarter of a vote rather than a full vote, as per AV.

This, in my opinion, improves on the current AV system, as it, unlike the current AV system, actually takes into account the notion of preference through the notion of weighted votes. It does seem odd to me that someone's fifth choice could be worth just as much as a vote as someone's first choice.

Moreover, this weighted system would make it more difficult for a candidate who, say, came third in the first preference vote, to win overall, without making it downright impossible. They could still win, but they would have to have had an significant proportion of, say, the second and third votes in order to do so. Which only seems fair, in my opinion.

What do you think? By the way, I'm not sure whether I'm a yes-AV or a no-AV person - all I'm saying is that I think this weighted-AV is better than the current AV proposed.

(Sorry if I got something wrong!)

*What fractions should be used, is, of course, open to debate itself. The ones I decided on seem natural to me, but you may disagree! Maybe it should be 1, a half, a quarter, an eighth, and so on?
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Stratos
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Hmm it sounds interesting but the problem of course will be that 'the people' will find it even more complicated and David Cameron knowing this will play on that weakness, constantly stating its complex and expensive etc.
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7he5haman
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(Original post by Stratos)
Hmm it sounds interesting but the problem of course will be that 'the people' will find it even more complicated and David Cameron knowing this will play on that weakness, constantly stating its complex and expensive etc.
I guess some people may find it complicated, but really all they have to do on their part is map their preferences onto the voting card. Assuming that AV is sound, then how 'complicated' it is isn't something that should worry 'the people' - it's not like they're the ones who have to run the AV algorithms!

But the idea is ok, right? That's all I'm concerned with right now lol
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jesusandtequila
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I simply don't think it's a good idea to mix up preferential voting and Borda count.

The whole process of eliminations and redistributions under AV is such that it simulates elections with less candidates, and keeps one person, one vote in those hypothetical elections - hence why the proportions don't dip, and rightly so. In the Borda count, where all the preferences are counted regardless, it is right that they are weighted, but to mix the two is strange and largely, unjustifiable when you consider that AV is merely a series of run-offs done instantly rather than over the course of weeks.
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Jacktri
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My idea is better everyone is given a list of every party and then you give them scores out of 100 you then use the inter quartile range to get an average score for each party and the party with the highest wins
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tripleeagle
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I considered this at one point, thinking it would be a brilliant system

But what if you really really want Candidate A to win and only slightly want Candidate B to win? You probably wouldn't want Candidate A to overtake Candidate B so you wouldn't vote for Candidate A.

In essence, it would lead to severe levels of tactical voting and just put as back where we started: with FPTP...
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tripleeagle
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(Original post by Jacktri)
My idea is better everyone is given a list of every party and then you give them scores out of 100 you then use the inter quartile range to get an average score for each party and the party with the highest wins
You probably haven't considered the implications of this system with regards to tactical voting. And if you are voting for a party instead of a candidate (as you seem to propose) then we would no longer have the constituency link...which could lead to all sorts of problems
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Jacktri
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(Original post by tripleeagle)
You probably haven't considered the implications of this system with regards to tactical voting. And if you are voting for a party instead of a candidate (as you seem to propose) then we would no longer have the constituency link...which could lead to all sorts of problems
America has states with the same population as our country and their state system works fine so a whole country system should work fine for us
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GarethBrown
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(Original post by tripleeagle)
You probably haven't considered the implications of this system with regards to tactical voting. And if you are voting for a party instead of a candidate (as you seem to propose) then we would no longer have the constituency link...which could lead to all sorts of problems
Out of interest, what problems will losing the constituency link actually bring to bear, that we don't already have? I keep seeing this point mentioned and can't for the life of me think of a genuine reason.

Realistically, 99% of voters vote for a party rather than an individual, except in rare cases where independents are elected, and 99% of MP's time is probably spent out of their constituency - this is after all why we have local elections for county and district councils.
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james120793
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I think what you're describing sounds similar to a Borda count, the system used for Eurovision, and the like. An interesting way of voting, but so tactical, its crazy! And we all know how tactical Eurovision gets....
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U.S Lecce
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No this is a totally different system. Also it's a bit late now isn't it lol

Av: it's basically just elimination. It's like having multiple elections. Say they are 4 candidates in the running and you have a vote. The person that has the fewest votes is eliminated in the first round. Then you have another vote between the 3 that's left and those that voted for the eliminated candidate vote for one of the remaining. Again the person that comes in last is eliminated. Then there is two left and people vote again until there is a winner. This is essentially how av works, but instead of having multiple elections you do one and put you preference in order of 1 to however many candidates are left. Honestly why is this so hard for people to comprehend?
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JW92
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You don't want a situation where a second preference vote becomes a vote against the person you actually want.
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7he5haman
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(Original post by U.S Lecce)
No this is a totally different system. Also it's a bit late now isn't it lol

Av: it's basically just elimination. It's like having multiple elections. Say they are 4 candidates in the running and you have a vote. The person that has the fewest votes is eliminated in the first round. Then you have another vote between the 3 that's left and those that voted for the eliminated candidate vote for one of the remaining. Again the person that comes in last is eliminated. Then there is two left and people vote again until there is a winner. This is essentially how av works, but instead of having multiple elections you do one and put you preference in order of 1 to however many candidates are left. Honestly why is this so hard for people to comprehend?

I was just a suggestion - I just wanted to hear what people thought about it!

I completely understand AV. You must have either mis-read my post, or I didn't word it well.

My idea is this: after the first round and assuming no one makes 50%, and after the tail-ender drops off, the 2nd preference votes from the tail-ender voters come into effect (right?). Now, instead of counting these each as one *full* vote, I'm counting them as *half* a vote. And so on.

EDIT: sorry, I'm at fault here - I see now that decreasing the value of subsequent votes does ruin the idea of AV basically being multiple elections done in quick succession, since e.g. in the second round of voting the votes are worth half as much as the round before. So, in that sense, I guess it is a different system. Sorry!
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7he5haman
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(Original post by tripleeagle)
I considered this at one point, thinking it would be a brilliant system

But what if you really really want Candidate A to win and only slightly want Candidate B to win? You probably wouldn't want Candidate A to overtake Candidate B so you wouldn't vote for Candidate A.

In essence, it would lead to severe levels of tactical voting and just put as back where we started: with FPTP...
True, but this is surely a point for all AV systems - I don't know whether I'm no- or yes-AV, I just wanted to see what people thought of this one
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7he5haman
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(Original post by jesusandtequila)
I simply don't think it's a good idea to mix up preferential voting and Borda count.

The whole process of eliminations and redistributions under AV is such that it simulates elections with less candidates, and keeps one person, one vote in those hypothetical elections - hence why the proportions don't dip, and rightly so. In the Borda count, where all the preferences are counted regardless, it is right that they are weighted, but to mix the two is strange and largely, unjustifiable when you consider that AV is merely a series of run-offs done instantly rather than over the course of weeks.
Thank you for an enlightening post - I hadn't ever considered viewing AV in this way as bolded above.

I guess I got wrapped up too much in the notion of preference, and didn't see how the current system actually accounted for it.

Thanks!
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