Am I Hot Or Not: The George W. Bush Edition

Steven Levy has a very interesting article over at Newsweek where he talks about William Poundstone‘s upcoming book Gaming the Vote: Why Elections Aren’t Fair (and What We Can Do About It).

The gist of it, to steal both men’s thunder, is that by giving the election to the candidate who got the most votes even when that count is not a majority, one ensures that in many cases the electorate’s second-favorite candidate gets elected. George W. is a recent example in American politics. Even though he received less than 50% of the vote, he was elected, because the people voting against him split their votes among other candidates.

The proposed solution? Change elections from a “pick one candidate” system to a “rate each candidate on a scale of 1 to 5” system. Poundstone asserts that this is both constitutional and feasible, and would provide far superior election results. Sounds like very interesting grist for the mill; I’ve added his book to my reading list.