Difference between revisions of "User:Araucaria"

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Send email to araucaria dot araucana at gmail dot com.
 
Send email to araucaria dot araucana at gmail dot com.
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== Election Reform Priorities ==
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My highly opinionated views on what can be done to improve the US form of government:
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=== Trust in the process ===
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Before anything else, we need to trust the mechanics of voting:
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* [http://www.votehere.net/NYTimes-DidYourVoteCount.pdf Did your vote count?]
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* [http://www.siam.org/siamnews/03-04/e-voting.htm What's so special about voting?]
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* [http://www.siam.org/siamnews/04-04/voting.pdf Trustworthy Cryptographic Voting Systems]
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* [http://www.spectrum.ieee.org/WEBONLY/publicfeature/oct02/evot.html Trust but Verify].  Use a machine to enter the ballot, but print it out in a form that is readable by both humans and machines.  Count the paper ballots only.  This lets people enter their vote by hand if they need to, in the event of machine malfunction, ink running out, etc.
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* In my personal opinion, the voting period should be longer than 7 AM to 8 PM.  Let it be 2, 3 or even 7 days.  And ballot verification should be available online.
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=== Redistricting reform ===
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Redistricting is too entwined with partisan politics.  By federal law, states should be required to enact non-partisan restricting reform along the lines of [http://www.centrists.org/pages/2004/07/7_buck_trust.html Iowa's successful law].  In a nutshell:
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* First, after the census, the state sets up a 5 person redistricting commission.  The Democrats and Republicans choose two members each.  These four then choose a fifth non-partisan member who serves as the chairperson.  By law the fifth member cannot be a holder of any political party office and cannot be a relative or employee of any member of the legislature.
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* This five member commission then sets about redrawing the districts using several legal guidelines.  Among these are:
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** Population - The districts must be as equal in population as possible.
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** Respect for political subdivisions - for example county lines.
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** Contiguousness - The district must be contiguous.  Iowa law says that any area that meets only at the points of the corners is not contiguous.
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** Compactness - This is the relative "squareness" of the district.  As much as the other factors will allow, the district must be as compact as possible.  This gets rid of those oddly shaped districts seen in other states.
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** Political and racial neutrality - The Iowa Code states that districts shall not be drawn to favor any political party, an incumbent legislator or member of Congress, or any other person or group.  The district also cannot be drawn for the purpose of augmenting or diluting the voting strength of a language or racial minority group.
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* To insure compliance with number 5 above, Iowa law prohibits use of the following data:
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** Addresses of incumbents
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** Political affiliation of registered voters
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** Previous election results
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** Any demographic data other than population headcounts.
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=== Better proportional representation at the federal and state levels ===
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=== Transparency and efficiency of legislative process ===
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=== A better single-winner [[Voting system]] ===

Revision as of 14:35, 31 March 2005

Monkey Puzzle

Current favorite Condorcet completion method is Definite Majority Choice.

Send email to araucaria dot araucana at gmail dot com.

Election Reform Priorities

My highly opinionated views on what can be done to improve the US form of government:

Trust in the process

Before anything else, we need to trust the mechanics of voting:

Redistricting reform

Redistricting is too entwined with partisan politics. By federal law, states should be required to enact non-partisan restricting reform along the lines of Iowa's successful law. In a nutshell:

  • First, after the census, the state sets up a 5 person redistricting commission. The Democrats and Republicans choose two members each. These four then choose a fifth non-partisan member who serves as the chairperson. By law the fifth member cannot be a holder of any political party office and cannot be a relative or employee of any member of the legislature.
  • This five member commission then sets about redrawing the districts using several legal guidelines. Among these are:
    • Population - The districts must be as equal in population as possible.
    • Respect for political subdivisions - for example county lines.
    • Contiguousness - The district must be contiguous. Iowa law says that any area that meets only at the points of the corners is not contiguous.
    • Compactness - This is the relative "squareness" of the district. As much as the other factors will allow, the district must be as compact as possible. This gets rid of those oddly shaped districts seen in other states.
    • Political and racial neutrality - The Iowa Code states that districts shall not be drawn to favor any political party, an incumbent legislator or member of Congress, or any other person or group. The district also cannot be drawn for the purpose of augmenting or diluting the voting strength of a language or racial minority group.
  • To insure compliance with number 5 above, Iowa law prohibits use of the following data:
    • Addresses of incumbents
    • Political affiliation of registered voters
    • Previous election results
    • Any demographic data other than population headcounts.

Better proportional representation at the federal and state levels

Transparency and efficiency of legislative process

A better single-winner Voting system