What is an adversarial election?

An adversarial election is one where a single voting choice votes for one candidate and also effectively votes against one or more candidates.

What is a non-adversarial election?

A non-adversarial election is one where a vote for or against one candidate does not cast any vote for or against any other candidate.

Which voting systems are adversarial?

  1. Plurality Voting System (vote for only one)
  2. Plurality Voting System with Runoff (vote for only one)
  3. At Large Plurality Voting System (vote for up to {number})
  4. Ranked Choice System (sort your choices)
  5. Instant Runoff System (sort your choices)
  6. Approval Voting (Vote for any you like)
  7. Approval with Runoff (Vote for any you like, then vote for only one)

 - In each case, the votes cast for candidates also effectively voted against the ones not cast for.

Which voting systems are non-adversarial?

  1. Independent Voting System (vote on each candidate separately)
  2. Free Choices Rating System (rate each candidate separately)

 - In each case, the votes cast for and against candidates have no effect on any other candidates.

How does an adversarial election affect other candidates?

  1. Plurality Voting (all kinds), Ranked Choice, and Instant Runoff all unfairly favor the candidate most different from the others.
  2. Plurality Voting (all kinds), Ranked Choice, and Instant Runoff all unfairly disfavor two or more candidate similar to each other.
  3. A Ranked Choice System or Instant Runoff vote can boost a candidate the voter does not like.
  4. Approval Voting gives some voters more power than others.

Because any voting action by the voter affects more than one candidate and does so in different ways, there is no fairness in any of these systems.

Does a non-adversarial election affect other candidates?

  1. The Independent Voting System adds absolutely no bias to anyone's vote.

     - Each voter decides to vote for, vote against, or abstain on each candidate separately.

     - All voters affect all candidates in the same way. There are no side effects.

  2. The Free Choices Rating System adds random biases caused by voter whim.

     - This allows the voter to control the strengths of the votes, which can produce erratic results.

     - The outcome can be chaotic. It should not be used.

With these methods, making any voting move affects only the candidate voted for.

The Independent Voting System is the only totally fair system.

Other "features" of elections which bias the outcomes.

  1. Primary elections and caucuses (no need with Independent Voting)
  2. Straight Party device
  3. At-large (multiple seat) districts
  4. Winner-take-all delegate and elector selection
  5. Unsecured mail-in ballots
  6. Only one set of officials counting ballots (all observers should also count ballots - any discrepancies cause an investigation)