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Thursday, October 21, 2010

Voting in Our IRV Election

This may seem a little counter-intuitive, but does this make sense? When voting, fill out the ballot by...

#1: Voting your heart. Put the person who may not be a 'top' candidate and whom you don't think is actually going to win, but who deserves a shout-out because of all the great work they've done in the community over the years. There are a number of candidates on the ballot who fit this description.

#2: Voting your head. Put the person you'd be happiest with and whom you think has a real chance of winning thanks to endorsements, money, organization, and name recognition, but who may need that extra push over the other 'top' contenders to make it. When your #1 person gets eliminated, then your #2 gets your vote.

#3: Voting your ass. Well, cover your ass, at least, with your #3 vote. This person ought to be one of the 'top' candidates, but someone you're not totally on-board with for one reason or another. Maybe they're inexperienced, have a skeleton or two in their closets, or they just haven't lit a fire in your heart for some reason. They're the best of the rest in your mind, and hopefully would be only slightly objectionable if they were to be elected, but you could deal with it.


  1. You know what? This makes a lot sense. I don't mind putting someone at the top who might not/definitely not going to win. With that said . . .

    1) Nyese Joshua: What a good leader in the community and way to call out the SFYD!

    2) DeWitt Lacy, I think he has a chance of winning and has some sound endorsements.

    3) Tony Kelly, Can't go wrong with TK a bit to progressive for me and a skeleton in the closet but I covered my ass.

  2. This is only useful if that's how you truly feel about the candidates. On the other hand, if your favorite candidate happens to be a top contender, then the decision is pretty easy, and this voting method would be moot. It assumes that there are no good leading candidates out there, and I tend to disagree on that point.

    But, if this matches one's feelings about the candidates, then it may make some sense. Or not.

    I suspect that if lots of people did this, we might end up with some wacky results that maybe no one is happy with. I say that because this system is designed to work on the assumption that people will vote for the best overall candidate, and not try to game the system. Once we game it, the assumptions in the voting method you propose, Chris, all go out the window. It's like a stock market timing system which changes the stock market timing, rendering itself ineffective and obsolete. Example: Maybe the 'cover your ass' candidate would've won if everyone voted them first, but since they're third on everyone's list, some other schmuck who may not have been particularly popular rises to the top, and pulls in enough 2nd place votes to win before the 'cover-your-ass' votes are counted. Uh-oh.

    I think you're over-thinking this one. Vote for the overall best person... the one who seems competent, capable - maybe isn't perfect (who is?) - but who seems genuine, with potentially good ideas for the city and district. There are at least a few people out of the 21 like that. Are they "top" contenders? They will be, if you vote for them.

  3. Hey, it's just a parlor game suggestion, realy. Yes, if you believe that one of the top candidates is also deserving of #1, then absolutely, they should be the #1.

  4. I understand. As a game, I think it sounds pretty fun. As a practice, mmmaybe not so much.


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