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A new report on plunging turnout in federal primary elections underscores a crisis of non-participation in American elections -- one that is far more pronounced and troubling in primary elections and city elections than for higher-profile elections for president and Congress. There are concrete actions we could take to boost participation and give voters more choice and better representation in our elections.
The Electoral College in its current form is always pretty crazy--after all, every election it causes campaigns to ignore most of the country in favor of a handfull of swing states. But you may not know the four craziest Electoral College rules, written into the Constitution, that could take effect this November.
- Posted: September 24, 2012
- Author(s): Sara Helmi
- Categories: Fair Voting/Proportional Representation, Asia and Oceania, International Elections, Home, Elections Worldwide
Hong Kong's pro-democracy parties did not perform as well as expected in the September 9 Legislative Council elections. The New York Times would have you believe that the disappointing result can be blamed on Hong Kong's proportional representation system. But that explanation is misleading and distracts from the real problems of the city's electoral structure.
- Posted: September 15, 2012
- Categories: Home
California's new Top Two election system has its strong advocates and opponents. Some opponents brought a lawsuit against Top Two to address what it saw as unconstitutional flaws. Although they lost in court, the legislature corrected one of the major flaws highlighted in the lawsuit. But now wealthy interveners in the case are seeking to collect fees against the plaintiffs, and a state judge has agreed. The interveners' action and the judge's ruling set a dangerous precedent.
Texas has had problems with redistricting - yet again. Last week's federal court ruling that Texas's 2011 plans for congressional districts and state legislative districts had both the purpose and effect of further reducing the representation of Texas's already underrepresented racial minority populations is just the state's latest salvo in the redistricting wars. We show that there's another way: fair voting plans.
- Posted: August 28, 2012
- Author(s): Andrea Levien, Presidential Tracker
- Categories: Presidential Tracker, Presidential Elections, National Popular Vote, Home
Was it the hope of swing state victories that led the Republican and Democratic parties to decide to host their conventions in Charlotte, North Carolina and Tampa, Florida? Evidence suggests that it was, even if that may not mean much in terms of either campaign’s ability to win those states.
- Posted: August 24, 2012
- Categories: Instant Runoff & Ranked Choice Voting, Congressional Elections, Home
Having just completed his 6th term in the U.S. House, Republican Todd Akin is widely known as Missouri's controversial Senate candidate. As the media scorns his comments about rape and pregnancy, many wonder how Akin came to office in the first place, which presents an opportunity to step back and examine the system that put him in power. What have we got here? A case of plurality voting and the unrepresentative legislator.
Electoral College electors weren't always chosen based on statewide winner-take-all rules. The first 13 U.S. presidential elections were messy and confusing, as each state used its own method for holding--or not holding--presidential elections.