On Elections

How people elect parliaments

First-past-the-post: a rogue’s practice?

How did ‘first-past-the-post’ voting – the common target of election reform campaigns in Britain, Canada and the US – get its famous name? “FPTP” is really just a plurality criterion: … Continue reading

July 31, 2018 · 7 Comments

Malaysian government calls elections on grossly malapportioned boundaries

Malaysians will go to the polls on May 9 to try to elect a parliament, using what are probably the world’s most distorted electoral district boundaries. Malaysia has been governed … Continue reading

April 11, 2018 · Leave a comment

UK Conservatives’ early election call cost them majority

Had UK Prime Minister Theresa May waited several months to call an election, her Conservative government might have retained its House of Commons majority in a smaller Parliament, even on … Continue reading

October 19, 2017 · Leave a comment

Snap Japanese election will not be normal competition

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has called a snap early election for the Shugi-in, the lower House of the Japanese parliament – but don’t expect a normal contest. The election … Continue reading

September 26, 2017 · Leave a comment

Will the UK ever get revised electoral boundaries?

The UK Government is pondering yet another major delay to a redistribution of House of Commons constituency boundaries, according to a report in The Times. If true, the House of … Continue reading

September 6, 2017 · Leave a comment

UK Election 2017 – Far from equal: most British have little say over government

There is no genuine equality of the influence of the vote of each British person in national elections. Endemic to all single-member-division electoral systems is a striking degree of influence … Continue reading

June 8, 2017 · Leave a comment

Cliffhanger vote in British Columbia

British Columbia is witnessing one its closest ever elections, and the first-past-the-post voting system has for once failed to yield an election result on the night. The Canadian west coast … Continue reading

May 11, 2017 · 2 Comments

Western Australian election shows weaknesses of Australian electoral laws

Counting has finished in the state election for Western Australia. The result is a pair of only partially satisfactory democratic assemblies. Western Australia has a fairly standard form of Australian … Continue reading

March 28, 2017 · Leave a comment

Unfair voting system in Australia’s West

Voters in the Australian state of Western Australia are about to elect a Legislative Council using a built-in mechanism to bias the election in favour of non-urban voters. Voters go … Continue reading

March 9, 2017 · 2 Comments