Re: “Tough for any party to win clear majority: EC”, The Nation, November 18.
There are several different ways to decide how members of a parliament are chosen and allocated, and each has pluses and minuses.
Thailand had a reasonable system (no system is perfect) which was widely understood by the populace and had most, if not all, the kinks worked out.
Now, it has been changed to a MUCH more complicated system which is NOT widely understood for the express purpose of preventing ONE specific party from winning a majority.
Do we laugh or cry?
What do you think is wrong with a system where seats won are based on the amount of votes. In my book it’s the most fair way there is. Just look what happened in the US, you had more people voting for Hillary but still Trump got in power. I find that a strange system.
The system has been designed, not to reflect the will of the voters, but to deny Pheu Thai a majority.
There are two major issues.
Look at the even distribution of Constituency seats shown below. Each of the six regions has a percentage of seats that closely reflects their populations – ie, it is a fair distribution
Now look below at the distribution of Party List seats, notice anything different?
Hint: The North region (strong PTP support base) has 16 per cent of the population yet only 8.8 per cent of the Party List seats and Upper Central region (strong Democrat base) has 17.5 per cent of the population yet mysteriously has 24.4 per cent of the Party List seats.
Upper Central and South (Suthep?) between them have 33.3 per cent of the population and 40.5 per cent of the Party List seats while North and Upper Northeast have 32.7 per cent of the population and just 22.5 per cent of the Party List seats.
The second issue is that the system is designed to award Party List seats to the losers of the Constituency seat elections. What this means is the more Constituency seats Pheu Thai wins, the fewer Party List seats it will get. Basically if you vote for the winning candidate of the Constituency seat your vote is essentially neglected in the Party List seat vote (because there is only one ballot per person).
Look at the maths in the article above.
Let’s assume the 13,132,563 votes are for Pheu Thai.
Because they have won 187 Constituency seats, their 13-plus million votes only gets them 35 Party List seats.
This equates to Pheu Thai getting one Party List seat for every 375,216 votes
Meanwhile, another party that happens to win ZERO Constituency seats but still gets at least 59,143 votes across several Constituencies will get 1 Party List seat
When it comes to the Party List, the Junta has created a system where one minor party vote is worth up to 6.3 Pheu Thai votes.
Why do you think the junta don’t want people to cast two ballots? One for their choice in the Constituency election and one for their choice in the Party List election?
Is it to save money on printing ballot papers or is it to distort the will of the people in an attempt to deny Pheu Thai another landslide victory?
Would you, Robblok, support a system that valued one Pheu Thai vote the same as 6.3 non-Pheu Thai votes?
If not, then why support this dodgy set up?
The smaller parties must be licking their lips at the thought of their bargaining power and how they can get their hands on some choice ministries to scam.
I support that the number of votes reflecting the number of seats. So 50 per cent of the votes get 50 per cent of the seats. In my book, that is fair.
For an alleged accountant, you’re not very good with numbers.
Thailand’s Constituency seats are conducted under a first-past-the-post system.
In an election where there are 100 voters and two candidates – 51 votes will win the seat (51 vs 49) – 51 per cent of the vote.
In an election where there are 100 voters and three candidates – 34 can win (34 vs 33 vs 33) – 34 per cent of the vote.
It is this dilution of the vote by having multiple candidates that reduces the winners’ total percentage of votes.
If there are 10 candidates, 11 votes can be a winning number (11 vs 10 vs 10 vs 10 vs 10 vs 10 vs 10 vs 10 vs 10 vs 9) – 11 per cent of the vote.
This is what the junta are taking advantage of when it comes to distributing the Party List seats.
Tell me, Robblok, why do you think the junta have gone with the one ballot for two elections. Party List gerrymander?
They could simply have 500 Constituency seats each representing 60,000 voters – most seats wins.
Why do you think they avoided this simple option?
Or, why not be truly proportional and have one ballot – and whatever percentage of the vote your party wins, you get that many seats. Why do you think they also avoided this simple option.
It doesn’t take a genius to answer any of these questions.