Real Choices / New Voices

How Proportional Representation Elections Could Revitalize American Democracy, second edition

Douglas J. Amy

Columbia University Press

Real Choices / New Voices

Google Preview

Pub Date: September 2002

ISBN: 9780231125499

288 Pages

Format: Paperback

List Price: $35.00£27.00

Pub Date: September 2002

ISBN: 9780231125482

288 Pages

Format: Hardcover

List Price: $105.00£81.00

Pub Date: September 2002

ISBN: 9780231500753

288 Pages

Format: E-book

List Price: $34.99£27.00

Real Choices / New Voices

How Proportional Representation Elections Could Revitalize American Democracy, second edition

Douglas J. Amy

Columbia University Press

There is a growing realization that many of the problems afflicting American elections can be traced to the electoral system itself, in particular to our winner-take-all approach to electing officials. Douglas Amy demonstrates that switching to proportional representation elections—the voting system used in most other Western democracies, by which officials are elected in large, multimember districts according to the proportion of the vote won by their parties—would enliven democratic political debate, increase voter choice and voter turnout, ensure fair representation for third parties and minorities, eliminate wasted votes and "spoliers," and ultimately produce policies that better reflect the public will. Looking beyond new voting machines and other quick fixes for our electoral predicament, this new edition of Real Choices/New Voices offers a timely and imaginative way out of the frustrations of our current system of choosing leaders.
Douglas Amy has written a very important book showing how fundamental election reform that involves European-style proportional representation would create 'a different and better kind of democracy' in the United States. Lani Guinier
Amy's book may be the best of the genre.... Amy's coverage of these issues [of election systems] is well articulated and nicely organized, and for those confronting these issues for the first time, it provides an excellent introduction... The first edition of this book was a useful addition to the literature. The second edition is even better. Richard L. Engstrom, Representation
1. Fair Representation for All
2. Solving the Redistricting Problem
3. Improving Election Campaigns
4. Toward a Multiparty System
5. Electing More Women
6.Fair Representation for Racial and Ethnic Minorities
7. Encouraging Voter Turnout
8. PR: A Different and Better Kind of Democracy
9.Objections to Proportional Representation
10.Versions of Electoral Reform for the United States
11.The Political Prospects for PR in the United States
Appendix A. Seat Allocation Formulas in Proportional Representation
Appendix B. Vote Counting and Ballot Transfer in the Single Transferable Vote
Appendix C. The Forgotten History of Proportional Representation in the United States
Selected Bibliography
Additional Resources on the World Wide Web

About the Author

Douglas Amy is professor of politics at Mount Holyoke College. He lives in Northampton, MA.