Thursday, October 29, 2009

The rating of main presidential candidates (according to 5 polls, conducted at the beginning of October 2009)

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UkrToday said...

All the polls show the same outcome.

There are only two candidates that can progress to the second round of voting. Yanukovych and Yymoshenko.

Ukraine uses a two-round first-past-the-post voting system.

Support for minor candidates below 15% means nothing. Their votes are wasted.

Yatseniuk, Yushchenko and other candidates closely associated with Our Ukraine-Nationalist movement are competing against each other for their share of the same slice of the cake.

It is basic math.

If as a group you have 16% support but you divided that three or four ways you can not win.

As the election progresses we will see a further consolidation of the vote as voters realize that supporting minor candidates is a vote wasted.

A better alternative would have been for Ukraine to adopt a preferential "ranked ballot" voting system.

If no single candidate has 50% or more votes then the candidate(s) with the least votes is excluded and their votes redistributed according to the voters nominated choice of preference.

A preferential voting system is designed to produce the same result as if the candidate excluded had not stood. One round of voting at half the costs with more or less the same outcome.

It is possible in some circumstances with a preferential voting system that an alternative candidate will make it to second place. For example Yushchenko has 3-4% of the vote Yatseniuk 11-14% in theory Yushchenko voters may prefer Yatseniuk ahead of Tymoshchenko when Yushchenko is excluded from the count under a preferential voting system his support could flow on to Yatseniuk bringing him closer to out polling Tymoshenko for second place.

However, based on the current poll data it is clear, baring any major controversy, that in the end the Presidential race will be a contest between Yanukovch versus Tymoshenko no matter which system is used.

A preferential ballot system would only require one round of voting. Results would be known in days as opposed to weeks. At much less cost.

An even better option would be to have Ukraine's Parliament elect the head of state as is the case with Moldova, Greece and the EU. A parliamentary "head of state election" is just as democratic and again at much less in cost.

At a cost of 1 billion dollars one has to seriously question the merit and benefit of holding the circus parade.

The Presidential system has failed Ukraine and will continue to do so.
Power should lie in the hands of the peoples democratically elected Parliament.

Anonymous said...

The first and fourth poll are percentages of those who will vote (The participation rate) not of a percentage of electorate. Missing is the number that will not vote.

It is important when comparing polls you need to first convert them into the same scale. (Gross or net)

This would explain much of the difference in the figures. By the time you make the adjustments they report more or less the same result with little change in outcome.