Tuesday, 25 January 2011

An AV oddity

A very important issue to me as you may have gathered from my previous blows is equality.

I believe every vote should count as one, and every vote should only affect the result by one. However this is not the same under AV.

Party A has 50%+1 of the vote
Party B has 30% of the vote
Party C has 20%-1 of the vote

Under Fptp and AV this is a comfortable win.

However, even from an election pool of 10 million voters, under AV party A may have lost with 2 less votes.
So, to recap..at the moment, they won by 20% or 2 million votes...but take two away and they can lose.

Extreme obviously, but it demonstrates my point in the huge swings possible.

It would seem that under AV, a vote can be worth a lot more than one.


  1. Yes, it comes down to two votes, however given that every single person had the opportunity to be one of the two people that changed their votes there is an equality across the board here under AV.

    This is unlike FPTP whereby if I vote for the fourth placed party normally, and decide to change my vote to the third placed party...that action means less than if I vote for the second place party normally and decide to change my vote to the first placed party.

    You need to get on top of these fallacies.

  2. Just to make sure we're absolutely clear...

    if 2 people (any two people out of 50% +1) switch from A to B (and we're assuming all of C would 2nd pref B) then B rightfully win due to having a majority of preferences.

    If 2 people switch from A to C, and continue the trend of all of C giving first preferences to B, then B rightfully win due to having a majority of preferences.

    Straight away this is 50%+1 people that have an equal say.

    Then we look at B moving to A. Two people could move from B to A and would counter-act the movement away from A. This means that at least 80%+1 have an equal say.

    Finally 2 people from C could move to A to counteract the move away from A, instead of the two people moving from B. This means the final 20%-1 have an equal opportunity to be influential.

    Total: 100% of people's say makes a difference. It may come down to two votes, but that's irrelevant to the fact everyone's vote is equal. All it shows is that people's opinion is evenly divided between the two strongest candidates.

  3. No, any change u make in Fptp will minus one from the party you were voting for, and plus one for the new one. You cannot change it by millions

  4. It's not really an oddity, is it? It seems fairly elementary that if someone is going to claim to represent a group of people they should have the support of a majority of that group of people. Nothing out of the ordinary there.

  5. Well with all respect James, if you do not think it's odd that two votes can change the end result by millions than you and I have a seemingly huge difference in understanding of the word 'odd'.

  6. Two votes can change the outcome of any electoral system. That's one of the things with votes. The advantage of AV is that the change would reflect the wishes of the majority of the electorate. Sound more democratic to me, no?

    As I've said previously, my personal preference would be for STV, partly because it ensures the maximum number of votes actually go towards electing a candidate, thereby minimising the loss of votes when this kind of thing happens. Sadly, your anti-reform friends have kept that off the table at this time. AV is the most democratic way of electing candidates to the constituencies we have.

  7. James, according to AV and you two votes changes the entire will of the electorate. We know this is not true. We can see with our own eyes what the electorate as a whole want, so changing two votes should only change two votes

  8. We prefer to be called anti change or anti AV depending on our views on Fptp.
    Anti reform is 'anti change for the best ' which no-one would call themselves