Previously, I created a flowchart for use in voting in Canadian elections. It occurred to me today that it could be interesting to elaborate the concept into a website.
The site would allow people to enter their riding and rank their preferences for either local candidates or parties. It could then estimate the odds that their vote will make a difference they care about. For instance, if someone strongly prefers Party X to Party Y, and both candidates have a shot at winning in that person’s riding, then their vote is relatively likely to matter. By contrast, if someone hates both Party A and Party B equally, and one of their candidates is basically certain to win, then that person’s vote is relatively unlikely to matter.
There are different possible methodologies for the site. For instance, it could be based entirely on past election results, entirely on polling data, or on some combination of the two.
In circumstances where a person is told that their vote is unlikely to matter – for instance, if they prefer a party with minority support in every riding – the website could direct the person to more information on electoral reform and alternative electoral systems like the various kinds of proportional representation.
Unsurprisingly, this is one of those ideas that falls into the “things that may be interesting to discuss, but which I do not have the time to actually do” category.