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Why first-past-the-post voting favours the ibis (and Donald Trump)

The system works positive when there two candidates in an election however is a poor choice when there are a number of ones – and it might probably result in some unhealthy outcomes

• Ben Raue is Guardian Australia’s resident psephologist

The outcomes to this point of the Guardian’s fowl of the yr ballot haven’t been with out controversy. The Australian white ibis, a fowl that’s disliked by many who encounter it, took an early lead and has maintained that lead for greater than per week. Whereas this looks as if a wierd end result, it is smart when you consider the choices supplied to the voters. With so many birds to select from, the voting system used tends to provide a winner who has a dedicated help base, even when that choice additionally has loads of opponents.

The vote was carried out utilizing the first-past-the-post (FPTP) voting technique – everybody will get one vote, and the candidate with the best vote wins. This method works positive when there are simply two candidates working in an election, however whenever you get greater than two, it inevitably ends in candidates profitable with lower than a majority of the vote. The ibis is sitting on 13.6% of the whole vote, with the magpie coming second on 11.1%. The highest two birds mixed have acquired lower than 1 / 4 of the whole vote.

Associated: Australian fowl of the yr 2017: vote to your favorite

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Associated: Australian fowl of the yr survey: new ballot ruffles feathers in Canberra

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