Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Question of the day: Repeat voting edition

What if people were allowed to vote as many times as possible in an election, instead of the standard one person, one vote setup?

What would be the impact on turnout figures? Would more people vote, figuring that they could have the illusion of "more say in how things turnout"? (Of course, if everyone voted twice, the effect is neutral.) Would less people vote, figuring "I've only got time to vote once and everyone else gets to vote 100 times, forget it"?

Would people always vote the same way? Think of the 2000 presidential election; instead of having to choose between Nader and Gore, as it was believed, would people incur the extra cost to toss a few votes to each?

Could companies pay people to vote all day long as opposed to lobbying legislators? They're both lobbying, but if the company spent less in paying people, ceteris paribus, isn't this efficiency enhancing?

1 comment:

Dana said...

I think it would depend on how much effort it would be to cast extra ballots. If you have to fill out a new ballot each time, or just hit submit over and over again, that would make a difference. Also, would there be a cap on the number of times you could vote? If yes, then how is this really different than the current system?

You wouldn't want to dilute your vote for Gore by voting for Nader a bunch of times because you are still running into the same issue of splitting the vote.

I must think on this issue.

Matt - Chris Rock is coming to the Chicago Theater near my office. Almost considering getting tickets.