[Slightly OT] Re: Voting (was Re: PEP 318

Eric egusenet at verizon.net
Wed Mar 24 21:33:07 CET 2004

Joe Mason <joe at notcharles.ca> wrote in message news:<slrnc63985.3n2.joe at gate.notcharles.ca>...
> (The crux of the flamewar is that Condorcet tends to elect
> "compromise candidates" who are few peoples' favourite but palatable to
> most, while IRV is more likely to elect people that are the first choice
> of a large block but hated by others.  Which is preferable is a matter
> of philosophy.)

A Condorcet method will, if one exists, elect the candidate (called a
Condorcet Winner) that would win in a two-way contest with every other
candidate. When a Condorcet Winner does not exist, there various
methods for finding the winner, but you may be surprised in how often
a Condorcet Winner appears in various ranked ballot datasets I've

IRV only guarantees that it's winner will defeat at least one of the
other candidates in a two-way contest.

I cannot see how IRV and a Condorcet method would differ should a
certain candidate receive a large block of first place votes. For if a
certain Candidate is the first choice of a large block, it has a
distinct advantage in both IRV and Condorcet over all the other
candidates, but will not necessarily be the winner in either.

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