Jason OMahony - Irish political blogger, Irish politics, EU politics
 
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The Kiwi Method.

Posted by Jason O on Oct 11, 2011 in Irish Politics

The Kiwis do it repeatedly.

The Kiwis do it repeatedly.

Like most political anoraks, I spend a lot of time thinking about how to make Irish politics work, and as part of that, a New Zealand friend of mine reminded that next month New Zealand is voting on whether to change their voting system. In 1993 the Kiwis, fed up with a first past the post system that let the wrong party win elections with less votes than the other main party, voted in a series of referendums to change the voting system. After much deliberation and debate, they chose Mixed Member Proportional (MMP), which is basically the same system used to elect German MPs. The conservative National Party government led by John Key is not a fan of a system being too proportional, as it means that his government has to have the support of a majority of voters (the cheek!) so he’s called a referendum to change the voting system, giving people four choices, including our own beloved STV. Check out the NZ govt’s excellent website explaining the choices to people here. For my money, I think that Ireland should look at a form of MMP alongside our existing STV system, to elect “National” TDs. But that’s just me.   

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