Thursday, 21 April 2011

How the Alternative Vote (AV) system works

A lot of people still aren't sure how AV works and this isn't helped by the Yes campaign not explaining it and the No campaign lying about it. So here's a simple explanation that doesn't take ages to read:

Under AV you get the same ballot paper you do at the moment but instead of putting a cross next to your favourite candidate you instead rank the candidates in order of preference.

You put a 1 by the candidate you genuinely like best; 2 by your second preference, and so on. You can even just mark your ballot paper with an X, which will count as a1st preference only. Simple.


The big difference is that the system used to count the votes makes sure that a candidate has to get at least 50% of the votes to be elected.

When the votes are counted if someone gets more than half the votes they win. If no one does then unpopular candidates are gradually excluded. Then the preferences are used work out how people would have voted if that candidate hadn’t stood. If a candidate then has over half the votes then they’re elected.

But if no-one has got a majority we’d keep excluding unpopular candidates until we find someone with more than half of votes - this means that the winner has to have majority support.

No comments:

Post a Comment

I'm indebted to Birkdale Focus for the following choice of words:

I am happy to address most contributions, even the drunken ones if they are coherent, but I am not going to engage with negative sniping from those who do not have the guts to add their names or a consistent on-line identity to their comments. Such postings will not be published.

Anonymous comments with a constructive contribution to make to the discussion, even if it is critical will continue to be posted. Libellous comments or remarks I think may be libellous will not be published.

I will also not tolerate personation so please do not add comments in the name of real people unless you are that person. If you do not like these rules then start your own blog.

Oh, and if you persist in repeating yourself despite the fact I have addressed your point I may get bored and reject your comment.

The views expressed in comments are those of the poster, not me.