# Re: IRV - was Ms. Tobi's overheated rhetoric

From: Kaj Telenar <kaj_at_telenar_dot_com>
Date: Mon Nov 12 2007 - 08:07:31 CST

Arthur Keller wrote:

>> Could you imagine an IRV vote for Governor of California, where 8.5
>> million votes are cast? Would you tabulate that IRV race by
>> hand-count? How?

There are only a limited number of possible sequences of votes. If the
buckets for that race are not just who ever is first, but the whole
series, then you would end up with a bunch of series with the number of
votes cast for each series. Those series are much easier to manipulate
than stacks of ballots.

First the ballots are put into the appropriate buckets and the number of
ballots in each bucket is totaled. Each series could get its own 3x5
card. Then each of the series is allocated to the candidates based on
first choice. When the candidate with the lowest totals is eliminated,
then the cards are moved to the appropriate candidates pile and the

This system only gets difficult if you have multiple winners, such as
for a city council race. I assume that there is a limit to the number of
choices someone can cast. For example, one can vote for 1st, 2nd, 3rd,
and 4th choice; but not 5th or beyond.

example series:

Let's assume 4 candidates for governor and at most 3 choices (1st, 2nd,
and 3rd choice).
You would end up with the following series:

A, B, C
B, A, C
B, C, A
C, A, B
C, B, A

A, B, D
B, A, D
B, D, A
D, A, B
D, B, A

A, C, D
C, A, D
C, D, A
D, A, C
D, C, A

B, C, D
C, B, D
C, D, B
D, B, C
D, C, B

A, B
B, A

A, C
C, A

A, D
D, A

B, C
C, B

B, D
D, B

C, D
D, C

A
B
C
D

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Received on Fri Nov 30 23:17:16 2007

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