Electoral System of the Federation

by: ggamgus
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RedAurora
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Electoral System of the Federation

Post by RedAurora » November 13th 2012, 3:04 am

[centre]Throughout its history as part of the British Empire, and most of its history as a Commonwealth nation, Her Majesty's Government in Queensland had practiced the most-used electoral system in the world, first-past-the-post, also known as FPP. In 1994, the government changed the voting method to mixed-member proportional, or MMP.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fKAAq_8Poqo

The FPP system in the Canadian province of Ontario

Problems with First-past-the-post:

FPP is still used by most nations in general elections, but is now deemed unjust by many. This is because, in FPP, it is possible for the majority to lose. Think of these conditions:

1. Minor parties must be remembered, even in nations with two-party systems. Minor parties may receive 2 to 3 percent of the votes.

2. Assuming the two major parties now have a total of 97 percent of the votes, the minimum majority is now a minority. Only 49 percent of the votes is needed to win the election.

3. Greater influence = less votes:

For example, there are two left-wing parties with similar ideals in a nation. The nation is mostly left-wing, therefore one of the left-wing parties is sure to win, since there is only one right-wing party. The first left-wing party is the largest party, followed by the right-wing party, then the second left-wing party. The second left-wing party, however, manages to attract more voters from the first left-wing party this year. Therefore, in the general elections, the first left-wing party receives 33 percent of the votes, the second left-wing party receives 32 percent, and the right-wing party receives 35 percent. Despite the fact that 65 percent of the voters chose the left-wing, the right-wing party still prevailed.

This voting phenomenon, known as the “spoiler effect”, is perhaps one of the worst disadvantages of FPP.

The majority of the Queensland population, unsatisfied with their parties being under-represented (or not represented) in the Parliament, voted to change the electoral system in the 1998 referendums. Near 85 percent of voters, when asked about the current system during the referendums, voted against retaining FPP for parliamentary elections. When asked to choose a new system, out of MMP, PV, SM, and STV, 63 percent chose the MMP system by majority. The Parliament officially changed the voting method in early 1999, five years after New Zealand, another Commonwealth nation in Oceania, had switched.

The Mixed Member Proportional Representation:

The MMP has been called by its supporters as “the most democratic voting system” in the world. This is because, unlike the FPP, which led to only few parties dominating the government, the MMP encourages political diversity and allows much smaller parties to be represented along with larger parties.

In general elections, voters cast two votes. The first vote is for a candidate to become a Parliament member. Like first-past-the-post, the candidate that receives the most votes wins the electoral district where he/she ran. However, the second vote is for a political party. The party may be the same as the candidate’s affiliation, or another party. Based on the votes, the political parties are represented in the government as proportional to the results as possible.

Similar to New Zealand, the MMP system in Queensland also has a set of thresholds. These thresholds ensure that the parties represented are all still necessary, and in support by the public.

To be granted Parliament seats, a party must:

1. Receive at least five percent of the national vote in the latest general election, or receive at least ten percent of the national vote in the previous general election.

and/or

2. Receive at least one electoral seat in the latest election, or receive at least three electoral seats in the previous general election.
A party that fails to reach either threshold will not be granted seats.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JamSJ_yguqc

The MMP system in New Zealand[/centre]
Last edited by RedAurora on December 23rd 2012, 4:24 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Electoral System of the Federation

Post by RedAurora » November 17th 2012, 8:37 pm

*Updated.

I hope to put this on the wiki... as soon as I get an account. :P
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Re: Electoral System of the Federation

Post by Thomas » November 17th 2012, 8:45 pm

Have you registered?
Member of the AIN: 7 February 2010 - 1 January 2015
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Re: Electoral System of the Federation

Post by RedAurora » November 17th 2012, 9:12 pm

[strike]I've filled an account request form...[/strike]

My form's been approved, so I'll start working on the Queensland wiki page tomorrow...
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