Asset Voting and mechanics

So, personally if I were forced to pick a multi winner PR system it would be Asset Voting.

However, there are a few things about it that need some discussion.

  1. How should the votes work?
  • Plurality ballot?
  • Let everyone vote for up to W different candidates?
  • Let them vote integers adding to at most some number like W, 2W, 5W, or 100?
  • Or a weird system where you have the names of each candidate and you vote by writing the candidate’s initials in one of say 12 boxes (I.e. You have 12 votes, but impossible to overvote)?
  • Or lastly you enter a number 0-99 and then everything is renormalized?
  1. How should the negotiations work mechanically? Candidates have these weird random looking numbers of assets.
  • Should they have an hour? Three hours? One day? A work week?
  • Is it done electronically or on paper?
  • Are the candidates’ staff, Twitter accounts, etc open and being listened to during the negotiation, or are they just able to contact each other and emergency services during the negotiations?

We should make a website for this. is currently unused, we could snatch it and make a webpage about it. Today I am leaning towards where you have an Approval like ballot but you divide your vote equally among all marked candidates and are limited to either 3 marks or as many marks as candidates, whichever is higher.

I’d prefer it be done in a format in which voting for a candidate would be voting for that candidate’s preference list in an STV vote. It would be like “voting above the line” for a party, but with a candidate. The list should be made public before the election.


If I am parsing that correctly, your system is just a subset of STV where you can only cast those votes that the candidates have preselected. That undermines the big idea of Asset and can lead to elimination of consensus candidates.

Under Asset, consensus candidates that get little first place support are not doomed because a partisan candidate that is losing can throw his/her votes to the consensus candidate.

For example, suppose in some district, all but one winner has been effectively decided. Three candidates remain.
Leftist – 40k
Centrist – 20k
Rightist – 50k

If the centrist does not take a side, eventually the leftist may crack and give the 40k votes to the centrist (to stop the rightist from winning) and the centrist gets the final seat.
Under any subset of STV, the centrist would drop and the votes would go to a partisan.

I’m not a big fan of playing chicken with politics. It doesn’t work well when we make a budget and I don’t think it will work well with elections.

I would agree with you that it would be a problem with a single seat, but with a mult iseat district with at least 3 seats, it would be likely a centrist would at least get one seat. I feel that STV is generally good enough if all voters are perfectly informed, but I don’t expect voters to do enough homework to rank 50 candidates in their best interest.

I think it is better for candidates to negotiate before the election and allow voters to use that information in deciding on who to vote for so that it is harder for candidates to make completely self serving deals that may not have anything to do with the issues.

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There are a bunch of delegated voting methods that would do that. PLACE, Liquid Democracy, etc.

Why not run an optimal (or even, if it’s necessary and possible, a sequential) Condorcet PR algorithm then? Quota-consensus candidates are guaranteed to win then, and the public would know exactly what the candidates’ preferences are. In fact, it’d be possible for the media and experts to simulate the exact results by testing outcomes when certain candidates get more votes, etc.

The same dilemma occurs if candidates arrange deals before the election and then publish their list preferences, but here, the voters can actually see if a candidate is trying to play chicken (i.e. the leftist doesn’t include the centrist in his rank preferences at all), and if one of their preferred candidates plays chicken, they can pick another.