Help the Campaign for MMP, they’re Internet illiterates

Written By: - Date published: 12:11 am, May 9th, 2010 - 53 comments
Categories: election 2011, First Past the Post, humour, interweb, MMP, political education, referendum, Supplementary Member - Tags:

Campaign for MMPOne thing that the election in Britain brought home to me, was how much I’m grateful for having Mixed Member Proportional (MMP) representation here.

I didn’t start that way. In 1993, I was probably leaning towards Single Transferable Vote (STV) or even retaining First Past the Post (FPP). I did eventually vote for a change, and eventually for MMP. But that was largely due to the hysteria and types of the people who ran the campaign against MMP. Quite frankly I didn’t want to to associate myself with Peter Shirtcliffe and co, who in my opinion seemed to oppose a change for no more reason than it wasn’t going to be good for them and their interests.

However, over time, I’ve grown to appreciate the gradual progress and stability offered by MMP. It prevents both the conservative stasis of a Holyoake/Muldoon style government with the consequent flailing policies trying to resist change, and also the rabid and rapid change that is its consequence in later governments. The slowly changing fortunes of the various political parties causes change, because a government has to satisfy multiple coalition partners. Having to forge a government out of multiple coalition partners with quite different agendas forces the government to change policy relatively slowly and quite prudently by the political standards of when I grew up.

The more I look at FPP, Supplementary Member (SM), STV, and the like – the more I view them as being akin to having an elected dictatorship – as is currently being played out in the UK. The rigidities of the political bindings allow for stasis and rapid change. They aren’t suited for gradual change.

However, this weekend while I was looking around at the blogging on the UK election results, I saw that Peter Shirtcliffe was advertising at Kiwiblog. So I went to see how the Campaign for MMP was going, and to see what we could do on this site. Well bugger all – the campaign site has PDF’s a-plenty, but no resources for a blog site to scatter around..

Because I hate meetings ‘discussing’ what should be done, and in my usual unilateral style of getting something done… I made an overweight advert in 30 minutes out of their graphics and with a few opinions of my own and flung it into the public service advertisement area.

I figure that my fellow authors can only make me take it down. In the meantime it’d help all of you creative sloganeers and artists to focus and come up with something better (without a spelling error would help).

The Campaign for MMP appears to be operated with policy wonks with a fetish for PDFs and little thought about how to market their ideas in the internet age… For instance the wikipedia page hasn’t even got a link or reference in the body of the text to the Campaign for MMP’s website.

Lets fix some of those wee oversights by the Internet illiterates. There is no way that I want to have to go through voting with any of the alternatives to MMP in 2017 because it wasn’t marketed at the right audience – the generations that grew up with MMP as being the boring old norm. They tend to be suckers for the “it’s time for a change message”.

From Wikipedia the process and questions are going to be…

2011 referendum

At the 2011 general election, the first referendum will be held, asking two questions. The first question will ask whether to retain or abolish the MMP voting system. The second will ask which voting method (other than MMP) would be preferred. The options available are the methods the Royal Commission on the Electoral System recommended for further scrutiny in 1986 and the voters voted on in 1992.

Voters can choose to answer one or both questions.


The proposed questions are:

Part A Should the current MMP voting system be retained?

* I vote to retain the MMP voting system
* I vote to change to another voting system.

Part B Regardless of how you voted under part A, if there was a change to another voting system, which voting system would you choose?

* I would choose the First Past the Post system.
* I would choose the Preferential Voting system.
* I would choose the Single Transferable Vote system.
* I would choose the Supplementary Member system.[8]

2014 referendum

If the voters reject MMP in 2011, another referendum would be held at the 2014 general election to decide between MMP and the alternative voting system which received the most votes in the second question in 2011. This means that the 2017 general election may be held under a different voting system.

53 comments on “Help the Campaign for MMP, they’re Internet illiterates ”

  1. I remember checking out Campaign for MMPs website a while back. As part of the generation that grew up with the boring old norm, I also know we’re also a more visual generation. Their information needs to be more simpler to understand and easier to access than having to download a word document. They have good intentions though.

  2. Jenny 2

    MMP vs. FPP

    From New Scientist:

    “The number of UK electors voting for minority parties has risen from 1 in 20 in the 1950s to 1 in 4 today, yet the existing system nullifies almost all those votes. Something fairer seems to be called for – but what?”

    First Past the Post is fundamentally flawed

    • Well that isn’t true any more. 100% of the votes were for a minority party in the recent UK election.

      • Macro 2.1.1

        But Graeme – some minorities are more minor than others and yet get greater representation – eg Scottish Nationals 6 seats with 1.7% of the vote as opposed to the Greens with 1 seat and 1% of the vote, or the Alliance with 0.1% of the vote and 1 seat.
        Of course the real inequities are:
        Conservatives 36% of the vote – 47% of the seats in Parliament
        Lib Dems 23% of the vote – less than 9% of the seats in Parliament.
        It just isn’t a fair representation.

        • Bill

          Yet again a comment that treats Britain as a ‘greater England’.

          Plaid Cymru and the SNP put forward candidates in their respective countries ( Wales and Scotland). As the population base of these countries is a relatively small fraction of the combined England/N.Ireland/Wales/Scotland population total, it is no surprise that their %age of votes in a British context is low.

          But then, they don’t claim to represent any constituency in England or N. Ireland nor even in each others country. But they are a legitimate and sizeable voice representing constituencies within their own nations.

          As such, I can’t see how an MMP system like the one here could ever work in Britain what with it comprising of three nations and ( for the sake of elections) a slice of Ireland.

          edit… if MMP system(s) is( are) to be adopted it would have to follow from and not precede a federalisation of Britain.

          • Graeme Edgeler

            MMP (called Additional Member, but the same process) is used in elections for the Scottish Parliament, the National Assembly for Wales, and the London Assembly.

            In the Scottish Parliament, and the National Assembly for Wales, there are constituencies and regional lists. I can see no particular reason why the adoption of the Additional Member System across the UK could not occur in a similar way – there is no reason why there would need to be further federalisation for this to occur.

  3. Maynard J 3

    Is that process likely to be the real one? That second question is abysmal. If there was a second referendum, it would include MMP as an option – there might be a majority in favour of changing the system, but in the final vote MMP might be more favoured.

    Say I was filling out the 2011 refrendum – I’d select to retain MMP, and then I could either ignore the second question and not be represented, or choose a lesser evil and give weight to th numbers of people selecting a different system.

    My strong message here would be DO NOT select an answer in Part B – you would only be encouraging change. If lots of people did this, MMP (as voted in Part A) could have a massive majority over any of the other options (as selected in part B).

    If you choose an option in Part B, you’re effectively voting against MMP.

    • Lew 3.1

      MJ, the process is finalised, and consensus (with which I agree) is that it’s as good as it could possibly be. The second question will be used to select the option against which MMP is measured if (and only if) a majority of ballots cast choose to change MMP in the first question. This means that, in order to be supplanted, MMP has to lose two head-to-head referenda. That’s a hard ask, and I would argue that if MMP loses both, it doesn’t hold sufficient legitimacy to be retained.

      It’s crucial that voters select which alternative system they would prefer as a contingency, because that will determine the opposition. It should mean that FPP is ruled comprehensively out at the first hurdle, and with luck (and a strong and unequivocal campaign for Pref or STV) SM should be gone as well. Not that SM in itself is bad — but as this implementation is proposed, it’s not much more than FPP in drag with token proportionality.

      If supporters of MMP don’t choose an alternative in part B, you’re leaving the choice of what MMP will run-off against up to those who do — which means it will probably be SM, which has a better chance of beating MMP than any of the other options. That’s bad strategy.


      • Maynard J 3.1.1

        As per reply to Graeme below – I will have to vote for an alternative, thus adding to the numbers who are against MMP.

        In order to work against FPP I must choose the lesser of two evils.

        If the vote was “democracy” vs “other systems of political representation (or lask thereof)” I’d vote for democracy, and tick “dictatorship” as a second choice with a heavy heart if that’s what it took to avoid “theocracy” 😉

        • Lew

          That’s only true if you think the results of the second question indicate opposition to MMP. They don’t. This is not some matter of arguable interpretation; the question is expressly worded to make this clear.


          • felix

            It’s not like you to miss the point so widely, Lew – Maynard J is referring to the way the results of part B will be (mis)represented by those campaigning for one or other of the alternatives.

            • Lew

              Yeah, but in order to do so they’ll have to purposefully ignore the fact that you need to divide the leading result of the second question by the proportion answering “no” to the first question. If the pro-MMP lobby is even remotely competent, it’ll be a very small number indeed.


              • felix

                These people are political campaigners. They can manage that sort of purposeful ignorance before breakfast on an average day and they will.

                As fer meself I think I’ll just wait and see which campaign looks the least likely to pick up momentum.

              • Lew

                felix, but this is not a matter of perception. It’s the Electoral Commission they have to convince. They can talk all the bollocks they like, but if the first referendum fails, it fails — and if it doesn’t, there’s still a second one.


              • felix

                Nah, its about convincing the public that there was more support for the winning option from part B than there really was and using this to present a seemingly stronger case in the “x vs mmp” campaign leading up to the second referendum.

                Its all about perception.

              • Maynard J

                Took up the baton admirably Felix. All about perception, and when MMP supporters try to explain “well alternative x wasn’t actually that popular because…” you’re already losing the argument.

              • Lew

                But the argument is not won and lost on the basis of which system people think has support — it’s won on the basis of which system actually has support. Besides, results will be reported as percentages — so all that’ll happen by MMP supporters refusing to vote for STV or Pref is that the proportion of those voting for FPP or SM will be higher.

                Perception is a factor, but a much more significant factor is the prospect of MMP supporters ending up in a run-off against SM because they thought they were too damned clever to indicate a preference for Pref or STV in the frist referendum. It’s just stupid. It’s like the bloody idiots who fouled their ballots for the s59 referendum, leading to them being discounted. Just follow the damned instructions. It’s not a conspiracy, it’s not a trick question.


              • Maynard J

                It’s not being too damned clever, Lew, it not wanting to vote for STV, FPP, SM because I don’t like the systems. But I see your point, better to vote for the one I’d object to the least seems a smarter strategy.

                Here’s one of my favourite pieces on perceptions and polling:

                “WASHINGTON, DC—A poll released Monday by the D.C.-based firm Hahn & Associates revealed that 71 percent of Americans approve of President Clinton’s current approval rating of 63 percent. According to the poll, just 11 percent of Americans believe Clinton’s approval rating should be “significantly lower,” while 18 percent believe it should be “much higher.” “This poll is a clear public mandate for the president, as a great majority of Americans strongly support his current level of support,” White House press secretary Mike McCurry said. The 71 percent represents Clinton’s highest approval-rating approval rating since taking office.”

              • Lew

                MJ, think of it as a menu choice. Sure, you’d like delicious apple pie with ice cream and raspberry coulis. Me too.

                But if delicious pie was not available, which would you prefer: tinned fruit and custard, day-old toast and jam, or baked turd with sprinkles?

                I trust you wouldn’t leave that decision up to your enemies 🙂


              • felix

                If my enemies were hoping to run tinned fruit and custard against my lovely apple pie I’d be trying to make sure they only had baked turd with sprinkles to work with.

                Give them something hard to sell.

              • Lew

                Felix, since they’re so damned good, what makes you think they can’t convince the electorate it’s actually triple chocolate roulade?


              • felix

                That’s their problem Lew. Are you suggesting that it makes sense to give your political opponents the easiest route to victory you possibly can?


              • Lew

                No, I’m suggesting it’s prudent that the supporters of MMP mitigate their risks so that, in the unlikely case that MMP is rejected in two consecutive referenda three years apart, we end up with a next-best option.


    • If you choose an option in Part B, you’re effectively voting against MMP.

      Absolutely false.

      You’re only voting against MMP if you vote against it in the first question. Your second question vote has no impact on this.

      • Maynard J 3.2.1

        Try to look at things outside a narrow legalistic perspective.

        If you choose an option in the second part, people who support that will use those numbers as a campaign for that option. “X number of people want this”. You are therefore effectively putting your vote against MMP.

        If you support MMP you’re damned if you do and damned if you don’t. Don’t choose a preferred alternative and you might end up with FPP as the other option. Choose one, and you’d adding a vote to those who don’t want MMP.

        I realise from a technical perspective of counting votes it does not matter, but if everyone who supported MMP also chose an alternative, the result would be more votes for the sum of other systems than for MMP – which may not be reflective of what people want. Of course that wouldn’t matter if the vote in the first part was in favour of MMP, but if it was not, those campaigning against MMP will be able to use those results to over-inflate the popularity of alternatives.

        This also encourages gaming – should an MMP proponent vote for any option apart from FPP because they don’t want a non-proportional system as the alternative?

        • Graeme Edgeler

          Choose one, and you’d adding a vote to those who don’t want MMP.

          No, you’re not. You’re adding one to those who would consider that option as an alternative.

          If everyone casts a vote for both questions (and history – 1992 – suggests most will) then it will be blindingly obvious to everyone that every vote cast in that second ballot is a vote between systems for the 2014 run-off with MMP.

          those campaigning against MMP will be able to use those results to over-inflate the popularity of alternatives.

          They’ll only have one alternative to MMP, and the idea that you should vote against MMP in 2014 because 60% of people wanted FPP against it in the second referendum is just really stupid. “Oh, everyone else wants STV instead of MMP, so I’ll vote for that…” Be serious.

          This also encourages gaming should an MMP proponent vote for any option apart from FPP because they don’t want a non-proportional system as the alternative?

          An MMP proponent should vote for the other voting system they want MMP to face in a prospective 2014 referendum. It should be their favourite of the alternative non-MMP systems on offer.

          • Maynard J

            No, you’re not. You’re adding one to those who would consider that option as an alternative.

            If everyone casts a vote for both questions (and history 1992 suggests most will) then it will be blindingly obvious to everyone that every vote cast in that second ballot is a vote between systems for the 2014 run-off with MMP.

            You are essentially voting for the campaign for that alternative system. There is more to elections than people ticking a box and prople counting ticks. But if you want to consciously talk past my point, then by all means, continue.

            Supporters of MMP will be able to explain your point easily enough (you should know that nothing, bar nothing, in referenda is blindingly obvious) but expaining is losing, innit?

            They’ll only have one alternative to MMP, and the idea that you should vote against MMP in 2014 because 60% of people wanted FPP against it in the second referendum is just really stupid. “Oh, everyone else wants STV instead of MMP, so I’ll vote for that ‘ Be serious.

            See above comment. I’m not talking about me changing my vote, I’m talking about my vote being used in the campaign for an altertanive, because I have been forced to vote for something I don’t want. This is not that difficult a concept for someone who can recall that funny thing before an election called a ‘campaign’.

            An MMP proponent should vote for the other voting system they want MMP to face in a prospective 2014 referendum. It should be their favourite of the alternative non-MMP systems on offer.

            A vote for your second preference = a vote supporting the campaign for an alternative that you don’t want. It’s like an STV system where your option one is ignored, and people will campaign using your option two to market that option’s supposed popularity.

  4. IrishBill 4

    Showing your usual degree of tactful diplomacy I see Lynn 😉

  5. mikesh 5

    Those who want FPP will probably vote in block for that option in question 2. Therefore if you don’t vote for anything in question 2, the second referendum, if there is one, is likely to be a run off between FPP and MMP.

    • “Those who want FPP will probably vote in block for that option in question 2. ”

      Well, yes … you’d expect people who want FPP to vote for it. But note that even Shirtcliffe et al aren’t backing FPP anymore – they’re arguing that those wanting to dump MMP should back the Supplementary Member option (indeed, aside from Rodney Hide, I haven’t seen anyone calling for support for FPP). It may well be, of course, that the decision to pump SM is a tactical one – that they think FPP would fail and that SM is thus an obtainable second best option.

      • It may well be, of course, that the decision to pump SM is a tactical one that they think FPP would fail and that SM is thus an obtainable second best option.

        I’d have said that was a misplaced view. Supplementary Member may be more likely than first-pastt-the-post to defeat MMP in a 2014 head-to-head, but I think its chance of coming top in the 2011 poll is low. Unless the campaign is really well organised, they’ll be splitting their vote.

        Although perhaps that concern is met by their push for the second question in 2011 to be a preferential question.

  6. mikesh 6

    In that case the second referendum is likely to be a run off between SM and MMP if supporters of the latter refrain from answering the second question.

  7. Rex Widerstrom 7

    From your “ad”: STV = gerrymandering??

    To quote one of Australia’s towering poltical intellects. please explain.

    Thanks for the laugh over “stability” though. That’s the first word that comes to mind when I think of anyone from Winston Peters to Alamein Kopu. Or even when I imagine how an unelected (and unelectable) SST loon can be gerrymandered onto a party list and seemingly take control of the government’s sentencing and prisons policies.

    [Usual disclaimer: I am not advocating for a return to FPP]

    • lprent 7.1

      STV is still based around geographic boundaries that can be game played. A parties representation in parliament isn’t based around its share of the vote, but as much (if not more) on the shape of the electoral boundaries. Hell I could game some interesting boundaries that would always favour second or even third choices.

      When in doubt, look at the political commentators waffling on about ‘marginal’ electorates. They stopped doing that here for anything apart from human interest stories for the main parties a decade ago. Of course marginal electorates do matter for the minor parties at or below the 5% party vote. Rather than have this referendum, I’d be more interested in revising the drag-in effect for an electorate win, and/or the 5% threshold.

      Stability is in the effects, not the individuals. You forgot Worthless, Rodger Douglas and quite a few others. However the stability is more in that a change of government doesn’t result in a complete shift of policy anymore, but more a shift in direction. The electorate doesn’t like radical shifts and these days has an ability to punish parties that are trying to push too far or being obdurate – and can do it without the shielding provided by the boundaries commission. All parties are keenly aware of that, and that modifies their tendencies to favour moderated incremental changes. The individuals really don’t make much difference to that

      • Rex Widerstrom 7.1.1

        STV is still based around geographic boundaries that can be game played

        But it doesn’t have to be… NZ is small enough to quite easily accommodate “open” electorates. This concept has been kicked about a bi at (dare I say it) Kiwiblog (when the religious zealots and non-religious zealots can be kept out of the sandpit) and I must say I’m quite warming to it.

        Also unless I’m mistaken, it would be hard (not impossible, but hard) to game geographical electorates unless there were only one winner and some form of preference swapping allowed as happens in Australia. Their “proportional” voting can see even a cnadidate who wins more than 50% of the popular vote lose if he or she is dealt against by other candidates (who sometimes do so ignoring the wishes of members of their own parties).

        But the game-ability of an electorate in terms of boundaries would be significantly diminished if the top two or three or whatever were elected, and no preference swapping was allowed… or am I missing something?

        You forgot Worthless, Rodger Douglas and quite a few others

        Not forgotten so much as omitted for brevity. They’re also good examples of the biggest failure of MMP – lists appointed by a handful of people.

        All parties are keenly aware of that, and that modifies their tendencies to favour moderated incremental changes.

        A large cohort of people would argue that’s not a description of the last Labour government, particulaerly not in its last term. And another cohort (amongst whom, I suspect, would be some of your fellow authors) would argue that’s not true of the present National one either. Mining Section 4 or tthe “Super City” or “Three Strikes” are “moderated incremental change”?

        The individuals really don’t make much difference to that

        Some do, literally, nothing and thus I would argue don’t deserve to be there (Ashraf Choudray). Some have far more influence than any one indiidual ought to have (David Garrett).

        But the point really is, under any system but MMP or SM, I’m voting for a person who’s answerable to me. That candidate has to impress at least some ordinary voters as to their suitability to govern. Under MMP, all they have to do is win the hearts and minds of fellow SST fundies and then do a backroom deal with a party that itself is supported by barely 5%. Not democracy, IMHO.

        I’d swing behind MMP if we got a third vote… one that ranks the list, using STV, of the party to whom we gave our second tick.

        • Graeme Edgeler

          They’re also good examples of the biggest failure of MMP lists appointed by a handful of people.

          Richard Worth was twice elected by a constituency. And would have been twice more but for tactical voting. He may represent a problem with our political system, but it is not the problem you assert.

          • rich

            if you object to lists being chosen by a tiny number of people there is a simple solution. vote for a party that has its list chosen by the membership.

            • Rex Widerstrom

              Better by far, yes. Not perfect but an improvement. But unless every party is forced to do it that way a large number of voters have to choose between a policy platform they favour and a undemocratic process within that same party,and voting for a party whose process they favour but whose policies they may not. Hardly a perfect solution.

          • Rex Widerstrom

            Gahhh! Last time I echo LP’s comment before engaging brain filter 😛 Thanks Graeme.

  8. gingercrush 8

    All I want is for MMP to include Secondary votes for both the electorate and party vote. That way fewer votes are wasted. Electorally we would have seen some electorates have different results. A number of electorates get rather sizable votes for Green Candidates (and NZ First and Act votes elsewhere) and therefore essentially that vote is wasted. With a secondary vote I have no doubt Auckland Central would have been different and other electorates likely would be different as well. In the case of the party vote had NZ First voters chosen Labour or National under their secondary vote, they would have had influence rather than their votes just be distributed amongst all the parties that made it to parliament.

    STV to me would just see a whiter and less diverse parliament while giving political parties less power and causing MPs to voter-bait.

  9. mikesh 9

    “Not forgotten so much as omitted for brevity. They’re also good examples of the biggest failure of MMP lists appointed by a handful of people.”

    “But the point really is, under any system but MMP or SM, I’m voting for a person who’s answerable to me. That candidate has to impress at least some ordinary voters as to their suitability to govern. Under MMP, all they have to do is win the hearts and minds of fellow SST fundies and then do a backroom deal with a party that itself is supported by barely 5%. Not democracy,”

    It would be an improvement, I think, if list seats were required to be allocated in accordance with the percentage of the vote actually received by unsuccessful candidates, rather than in accordance with their positions on party lists. This would also ensure that each candidate would have to stand in an electorate in order to get into parliament; ie no-one would be able to enter parliament, as Don Brash did, simply as a list MP.

    • Rex Widerstrom 9.1

      if list seats were required to be allocated in accordance with the percentage of the vote actually received by unsuccessful candidates, rather than in accordance with their positions on party lists

      Now there’s an idea worth considering. I hope you peddle it during the forthcoming debate mikesh. Much as I’d like to see the lists ranked by the voters I accept that it might be too complex a task to rank a full slate of 120 (or more) candidates and only political wonks would do it – or at least do it with any knowledge of who they were ranking.

      But I’ve promoted it till now because it’s better than party-controlled lists and I couldn’t think of anything better. I think you might just have come up with a workable compromise… what do others think?

  10. jake 10

    You are supporting the campaign but you call the campaign computer illiterates for not having a flash ad for the blog sites to implement. Instead of bitching about them being ‘illiterate’ why don’t you help the volunteers? Trying to make the supporters look divided only gives fuel to the opposition and helps no one.

    • lprent 10.1

      The point is that it takes very little effort to make a banner, skyscraper, etc and have them available as resources. There are a number of sites that would be happy to put them up. These days if you’re running a campaign designed to be in peoples faces, it should be almost instinctive to make such resources early and revise them occasionally. Look at the anti-mining protest, or the copyright campaign, or even unite. If the materials are available, then sites will carry them. If they are not then they won’t. That is what I was pointing out.

      …why don’t you help the volunteers?

      I did, I demonstrated for both this campaign and for any others the basic requirement to get free advertising on websites – have resources that we can use. They don’t have to be fancy, but even basic animation is more effective than simple images.

      I’m pretty useless at doing graphics, but it took 30 minutes to build a ad and it is now running at the side of the site. It took me longer to unpack my old copy of animation workshop and install it in a virtualbox than it did to create the graphic. In fact it took longer to write the post. I used their existing graphics to show how damn easy it would be to at least get something going.

      I’m a supporter, willing to use my skills, and I couldn’t even register on the site to say that. I’m only interested in the implementation of a campaign, and not in all of the meetings etc. What I was seeing was a lack of implementation in running a campaign. So I wrote a post as a goad.

      Trying to make the supporters look divided only gives fuel to the opposition and helps no one.

      Bullshit. I was providing a little rev-up on their organizational side on a specific topic that I’m pretty competent on – and doing it early. Sure I could turn up at a meeting and say the same things or get involved in a protracted e-mail conversation. Or I could do what I did, which was to point out that the campaign needed to focus now on some basics, and in the process tell far more people about the campaign and why it needed some assistance.

      Which is more likely to be effective? Which was a more productive use of my time?

      Meanwhile, Shirtcliffe is already running skyscrapers at kiwiblog…

      • Lewis Holden 10.1.1

        As designer of the website, I find the comments useful – however I’m just the messenger posting content as provided to me. We’ve taken the comments on board and are working on some banners for people to use ASAP.

        • lprent

          Thank you, that is what I wanted to hear. Then I can zap my spelling error version. I think that they should find a considerable takeup by various blogs and websites….

          (I know all about the content placer issue, especially when it comes to the last minute revisions after you’ve set the site up… 😈 ).

  11. just saying 11

    What about voting ‘no confidence’ for the options in section 2? Would no confidence votes be counted as such?

    I suspect this isn’t any kind of solution. Just a thought

  12. Ari 12

    You know, if there were actually a MORE proportional system in the part B system, (MMP isn’t always proportional) I might be inclined to select a good option. As it is, you’re just given a choice between four terrible options. Do I choose the worst to make a potential runoff easier? Or do I choose the best in case we’re stuck with it, and risk making the runoff harder on the okay system we have? Really hard to tell.

    edit: Does anyone know how they’re differentiating STV and Preferential, given that STV is a type of Preferential Vote?

    • STV is preferential voting with multi-member electorates – this changes it markedly. It’s a form of proportional representation. In reality, they’re about as different as MMP and supplementary member.

  13. Hyacinth Broadchest 13

    Just to throw a cat among the pigeons, would you consider the re-instatement of an upper house? NZ abolished theirs quite early as being a ‘needless expense’ but this abandoned one of the checks-and-balances that were there to stop a rogue government from saying anything before the election, then unveiling a completely different agenda after the election, and forcing it through because they have the numbers.

    An upper house leads to fair bit of pork-barrel politics in the USA and in Australia, and can also lead to a deadlock, as Clinton found out early on. But it seems that all of these other voting systems are targeted at stopping the ‘1984 Labour Government effect,’ but what they do is give minority, single-issue parties huge bargaining powers behind closed doors, in rooms that may once have been smoke-filled before that became illegal. We wind up paying for a lot of un-elected, expensive people who add very little from day to day.

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    The Government is encouraging New Zealanders to support, visit, and explore Northland, as the closure and detour of SH1 at the Bryderwyn Hills begins, and critical repair work by the NZ Transport Agency (NZTA) gets underway, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says. “Many regions across the country suffered extensive and devastating ...
    19 hours ago
  • Government backs police to crackdown on gangs
    The coalition Government is restoring law and order by providing police new tools to crack down on criminal gangs, says Justice Minister Paul Goldsmith and Police Minister Mark Mitchell.  “Over the last five years gangs have recruited more than 3000 members, a 51 per cent increase. At the same time, ...
    2 days ago
  • Northland’s new Kāeo Bridge officially open
    Transport Minister Simeon Brown has welcomed the official opening of the new State Highway 10 (SH10) Kāeo Bridge, which will improve safety and traffic flow for people heading to and from the Far North. “This is an important piece of infrastructure for the Northland region that will help members of ...
    3 days ago
  • Government grants $6.6 million to clean up old landfill sites
    The Government has granted $6.6 million to clean up four historic New Zealand landfill and dump sites vulnerable to extreme weather events and coastal erosion. At the BlueGreens Forum in Paihia today Environment Minister Penny Simmonds said that the Contaminated Sites Remediation Fund grants will go towards fixing former landfills ...
    3 days ago
  • Dry weather triggers extra support for farmers and growers across the top of the South Island
    The coalition Government is providing support for farmers and growers as dry conditions worsen across the top of the South Island. “Conditions on the ground across the Marlborough, Tasman, and Nelson districts are now extremely dry and likely to get worse in the coming months,” Agriculture Minister Todd McClay said. ...
    4 days ago
  • Trade Minister heads to Abu Dhabi for key WTO negotiations
    Trade Minister Todd McClay travels to Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates for the 13th Ministerial Conference of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) today, to take up his role as Vice Chair of the negotiations. The Ministerial Conference is the highest decision-making body within the WTO and meets every ...
    4 days ago
  • Appointment round for King’s Counsel announced
    Attorney-General Judith Collins today announced an appointment round for King’s Counsel will take place in 2024. Appointments of King’s Counsel are made by the Governor-General on the recommendation of the Attorney-General and with the concurrence of the Chief Justice. The Governor-General retains the discretion to appoint King’s Counsel in recognition ...
    4 days ago
  • Retiring Chief of Navy thanked for his service
    Defence Minister Judith Collins has thanked the Chief of Navy, Rear Admiral David Proctor, for his service as he retires from the Royal New Zealand Navy after 37 years. Rear Admiral Proctor will retire on 16 May to take up an employment opportunity in Australia.  “I would like to thank ...
    4 days ago
  • Indonesian Vice President to visit New Zealand
    Indonesia’s Vice President Ma’ruf Amin will visit New Zealand next week, the first here by an Indonesian leader since 2018, Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters has announced. “New Zealand and Indonesia have a strong partnership,” Mr Peters says.  “The Vice President’s visit is an opportunity to discuss how we can strengthen ...
    4 days ago
  • Government boost to fight against caulerpa
    The battle to contain the fast-spreading exotic caulerpa seaweed has today received a $5 million boost to accelerate the development of removal techniques, says Biosecurity Minister Andrew Hoggard.  “The time is now to really lean in and build on the work of Biosecurity New Zealand, mana whenua, communities and local ...
    4 days ago
  • Minister attending Australian data, digital meeting
    Minister for Digitising Government Judith Collins is in Sydney to attend the first Data and Digital Ministers’ Meeting of 2024.  “This is a great opportunity to connect with our Australian counterparts and identify how we can work together on digital transformation,” Ms Collins says.   “Both our nations are looking into ...
    5 days ago
  • Appointments to Antarctica New Zealand Board
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has appointed Leon Grice and Heather Simpson to serve on the Antarctica New Zealand board.  “Since taking office, the Coalition Government has become concerned about the direction of the Scott Base Redevelopment Project,” Mr Peters says.  “It is vital that Antarctica New Zealand has the right ...
    5 days ago
  • Strengthening the Single Economic Market
    Finance Minister Nicola Willis has met with Australian Treasurer Jim Chalmers to discuss the opportunities to lower business costs and increase the ease with which businesses and people can operate across the Tasman.     “I have met with Treasurer Chalmers and shared our new Government’s ambitious economic goals, our plans ...
    5 days ago
  • Government to address business payment practices
    The Government will repeal the Business Payment Practices Act 2023, Small Business and Manufacturing Minister Andrew Bayly announced today. “There is a major problem with large market players imposing long payment terms and routinely paying invoices late. “However, the Business Payment Practices Act is not an effective solution and would ...
    5 days ago
  • Greater focus on work will reduce child poverty
    Worsening child poverty rates support the Coalition Government’s focus on reducing the cost of living and getting people into work, Child Poverty Reduction Minister Louise Upston says. Figures released by Stats NZ today show child poverty rates have increased, with the rising cost of living, driven by inflation, making it ...
    5 days ago
  • NZ announces new support for Ukraine
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters and Defence Minister Judith Collins have marked two years since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine by announcing further support and sanctions, and extending our military assistance. “Russia launched its illegal, full-scale invasion of Ukraine, in blatant violation of international law, including the UN Charter,” Mr Peters says. ...
    5 days ago
  • Finance Minister to meet Australian Treasurer
    Finance Minister Nicola Willis will travel to Australia today to meet her Australian counterpart, Treasurer Jim Chalmers.    “New Zealand and Australia have an incredibly strong trade and investment relationship. The Closer Economic Relations and Single Economic Market are powerful engines for growth on both sides of the Tasman.     “I will ...
    5 days ago
  • PM shocked and saddened at death of Efeso Collins
    “I am truly shocked and saddened at the news of Efeso Collins’ sudden death,” Prime Minister Christopher Luxon says. “Efeso was a good man, always friendly and kind, and a true champion and advocate for his Samoan and South Auckland communities. “Our thoughts and deepest sympathies go to his family, ...
    6 days ago
  • Greater support for social workers
    The Coalition Government is enhancing the professionalism of the social work sector and supporting the vulnerable people who rely on them, Social Development and Employment Minister Louise Upston says.  The Social Workers Registration Legislation Amendment Bill passed its third reading in Parliament today. It amends the Social Workers Registration Legislation ...
    7 days ago
  • Government delivers greater freedom and choice for sick New Zealanders
    The coalition government is delivering on its commitment to making principled decisions by getting rid of red tape that doesn’t make sense and allowing sick New Zealanders greater freedom and choice to purchase effective cold and flu medicines. A bill amending the Misuse of Drugs Act 1975 is being introduced, and changes to the Medicines ...
    7 days ago
  • Government begins reset of welfare system
    The Coalition Government is taking early action to curb the surge in welfare dependency that occurred under the previous government by setting out its expectations around employment and the use of benefit sanctions, Social Development and Employment Minister Louise Upston says. In 2017, 60,588 sanctions were applied to beneficiaries who ...
    1 week ago
  • State of the Nation
    Ka nui te mihi kia koutou. Kia ora, good morning, talofa, malo e lelei, bula vinaka, da jia hao, namaste, sat sri akal, assalamu alaikum. Thank you for coming to my first State of the Nation as Prime Minister. Thank you for coming to a speech where I don’t just ...
    1 week ago
  • West Coast tourism attractions officially open
    Regional Development Minister Shane Jones will attend the official opening of two highly anticipated tourism projects on the West Coast today – Pike29 Memorial Track, dedicated to the memory of the Pike River miners, and Pounamu Pathway. “The Pike29 Memorial Track is a way to remember and honour the men ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Independent ferry service advisory group in place
    Appointments to the Ministerial Advisory Group tasked with providing independent advice and assurance on the future of KiwiRail’s inter-island ferry service have been made, State Owned Enterprises Minister Paul Goldsmith says. “It’s important for New Zealand that KiwiRail is focused on ensuring safe, resilient, and reliable ferry services over the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Joint statement from the Prime Ministers of Australia, Canada, and New Zealand
    The Prime Ministers of Australia, Canada and New Zealand today issued the following statement on reports of Israel’s planned military operation in Rafah. We are gravely concerned by indications that Israel is planning a ground offensive into Rafah.   A military operation into Rafah would be catastrophic. About 1.5 million Palestinians ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Govt will deliver on expanded breast screening
    The coalition Government has made the first steps in delivering on its promise to  extend free breast screening to women aged 70-74, Health Minister Shane Reti says. “As part of the 100 day plan, the Government has now met with officials and discussed what is needed in order for the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Government announces woolshed roadshows in support of sheep farmers
    The Government celebrates National Lamb Day (15 February 24) and congratulates sheep farmers on the high-quality products they continue to produce. Agriculture Minister McClay hosted bipartisan celebrations of National Lamb Day with industry representatives at Parliament this week to mark the anniversary of the first frozen lamb exports that left ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Speech: Address to the NZ Economics Forum
    It’s great to be back at the New Zealand Economics Forum. I would like to acknowledge everyone here today for your expertise and contribution, especially the Pro Vice-Chancellor, Head of the Waikato Management School, economists, students and experts alike. A year has passed since I was last before you, and ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Government tackling high construction costs
    The Government is focused on reducing sky-high construction costs to make it more affordable to build a home, Building and Construction Minister Chris Penk says.  Stats NZ data shows the cost of building a house has increased by 41 per cent since 2019, making housing even more unaffordable for Kiwi ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour’s Three Waters legislation repealed
    The Coalition Government’s legislative plan to address longstanding issues with local water infrastructure and service delivery took an important step today, with the repeal of Labour’s divisive and unpopular Three Waters legislation, Local Government Minister Simeon Brown says. “Repealing this legislation is a necessary first step in implementing our Local ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Cost of living support for beneficiary households
    The Coalition Government is delivering on its commitment to ease the cost-of-living by increasing main benefit rates in line with inflation and ensuring the Minimum Family Tax Credit threshold remains aligned with this change, Social Development and Employment Minister Louise Upston says. The Social Security (Benefits Adjustment) and Income Tax ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Government announces agriculture delegations to better support Primary sector
    The coalition Government has announced ministerial delegations to support key areas across the Primary sector to deliver for New Zealand’s food and fibre sector, Agriculture Minister Todd McClay announced today. “I will be supported in my roles as Minister of Agriculture, Trade, Forestry and Hunting and Fishing, by three Associate ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Waikato MoU reinforces Govt’s commitment to increase NZ doctors
    The Government has taken an important step forward in addressing a critical shortage of New Zealand-trained doctors, with today’s signing of a Memorandum of Understanding for a third medical school, Minister of Health Dr Shane Reti has announced.  “Today’s signing by the Ministry of Health and the University of Waikato ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Speech – Lunar New Year 2024
    Annyeonghaseyo, greetings and welcome all. It is my pleasure as the Minister for Ethnic Communities to welcome you to the first Lunar New Year Event in Parliament. Thank you to our emcees for greeting us in the different languages that represent the many cultures that celebrate the Lunar New Year. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • More funding to Hawke’s Bay and Tairāwhiti
    Urgent work to clean-up cyclone-affected regions will continue, thanks to a $63 million boost from the Government for sediment and debris removal in Hawke’s Bay and Tairāwhiti.                                                                                                   The funding will help local councils continue urgent work removing and disposing of sediment and debris left from Cyclone Gabrielle.   “This additional ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Budget will be delivered on 30 May
    Plans to deliver tax relief to hard-working New Zealanders, rebuild business confidence and restore the Crown’s finances to order will be unveiled on 30 May, Finance Minister Nicola Willis says. The plans will be announced in the Budget which is currently being developed by Ministers.  “The last government’s mismanagement of ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Government advances Local Water Done Well
    The Coalition Government is continuing work to restore council ownership and control of water assets by repealing Three Waters and appointing a Technical Advisory Group to provide expert advice on the implementation of Local Water Done Well, Local Government Minister Simeon Brown says. “The Government will pass a bill to ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Minister congratulates NZQA Top Scholars
    Education Minister Erica Stanford congratulates the New Zealand Scholarship recipients from 2023 announced today.  “Receiving a New Zealand Scholarship is a fantastic achievement and is a testament to the hard work and dedication the recipients have put in throughout the year,” says Ms Stanford.  “New Zealand Scholarship tests not only ...
    3 weeks ago

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