Who Should Win This Election?

Prepared by:

Joseph Malkevitch
Mathematics and Computing Department
York College (CUNY)
Jamaica, New York 11451-0001



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Fifty-five voters have produced the following collection of ballots on 5 choices. Choices towards the top of the ballots are more preferred.


1. Who should be declared the winner?

2. What method did you use in deciding who the winner should be?

3. If a ranking (from first "best" choice to last "best" choice is to be made (no ties allowed), rather than selecting a single winner, how would you rank the 5 choices? How would you treat the situation where ties are allowed?

4. Are you still happy with the plurality (usual) method of conducting elections after studying this example?

5. If different reasonable methods of conducting elections lead to different winners what lesson does this have for democracies?