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Irish general election 2016

 
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emordnilap



Joined: 05 Sep 2007
Posts: 13690
Location: way out west

PostPosted: Fri Feb 26, 2016 12:20 pm    Post subject: Irish general election 2016 Reply with quote

Hi

I know this doesn't affect you Brits that much but today's the day - 26th February 2016 - we go to the polls in the 26 counties.

We use the single transferable vote system - Malta is the only other country using this variant of PR - and I've come to prefer it immensely to the British system. It means that, on your ballot paper, individual candidates can be listed in order of your preference. This can have a huge effect on internal party mechanisms. It makes one feel that one's vote does make a difference, especially so if one can influence someone else's second or third preference if not their first.

It's not truly PR (the more people that fill right down the ballot paper, the more PR it gets). Shocked

But STV can also lead to hung parliaments and uneasy, short-term coalitions; barring surprises, this seems to be the way this election might be going.

Contrast this with 24% of voters in the UK being able to elect a majority Tory government! It's no wonder that right-wing parties in Ireland have tried (fortunately unsuccessfully so far) to introduce the British system here.
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johnhemming2



Joined: 30 Jun 2015
Posts: 1882

PostPosted: Fri Feb 26, 2016 1:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Representing minority viewpoints (PR) depends really on the size of the constituencies. The bigger the constituencies the lower the percentage support required for representation.

It is used in Northern Ireland for the European Parliament and in Scotland for local elections as well as the other places you mention.

I prefer STV to a party list system as it gives the voter more power and the party machinery less power.
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Automaton



Joined: 22 Jan 2016
Posts: 129

PostPosted: Wed Apr 13, 2016 9:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It amazes me that people are content to continue with the system we have in the UK. We can safely say that after every election the 'winners' will have been elected by a minority, and the majority will have little (if any) representation.

And it seems terribly sad that most of the politicians don't have a problem with it either, given their supposed purpose of representation (but I guess there are some positive exceptions John Hemming Smile )

The Irish system seems much better to me too (maybe it's time to change country!).
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emordnilap



Joined: 05 Sep 2007
Posts: 13690
Location: way out west

PostPosted: Wed Apr 13, 2016 11:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The disadvantages of the STV system are showing up now: the two traditionally main parties keep saying they want to form a 'strong, stable government'. The people didn't vote for that so they can't get on with it.

There again, the Irish love a good old argument; they always end up compromising but in this case, it looks like another election might be called. Ireland has yet to learn the consensus politics of some of the Scandinavian nations.

Essentially, the people voted for local politics and against a dictatorship.
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Automaton



Joined: 22 Jan 2016
Posts: 129

PostPosted: Wed Apr 13, 2016 12:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

emordnilap wrote:

Essentially, the people voted for local politics and against a dictatorship.


Which, on the face of it, sounds pretty sensible to me (unless I get to be the 'benevolent' dictator Wink )
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emordnilap



Joined: 05 Sep 2007
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Location: way out west

PostPosted: Wed Apr 13, 2016 12:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Automaton wrote:
emordnilap wrote:

Essentially, the people voted for local politics and against a dictatorship.


Which, on the face of it, sounds pretty sensible to me (unless I get to be the 'benevolent' dictator Wink )


Politics doesn't make any room for sensible.
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kenneal - lagger
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Joined: 20 Sep 2006
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 14, 2016 2:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I went to Ireland in the late 90s and was horrified by the politics there. The town we stayed in was split down the middle between the two main parties to the extent that if you belonged to/supported one party you only ever used the shops and pubs that supported that party! Apparently this was the case all over Ireland.
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emordnilap



Joined: 05 Sep 2007
Posts: 13690
Location: way out west

PostPosted: Thu Apr 14, 2016 10:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

kenneal - lagger wrote:
I went to Ireland in the late 90s and was horrified by the politics there. The town we stayed in was split down the middle between the two main parties to the extent that if you belonged to/supported one party you only ever used the shops and pubs that supported that party! Apparently this was the case all over Ireland.


Luckily, immigration has diluted this behaviour quite considerably. The native population is retains (fairly harmlessly) some of its tribalness and is one of the reasons I like it.
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