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Monotonicity in Electoral Systems

David Austen-Smith and Jeffrey Banks
The American Political Science Review
Vol. 85, No. 2 (Jun., 1991), pp. 531-537
DOI: 10.2307/1963173
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/1963173
Page Count: 7
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Monotonicity in Electoral Systems
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Abstract

Much of the literature concerning the relative merits of alternative electoral rules is centered around the extent to which particular rules select @'representative@' legislatures. And an important concern in evaluating the @'representativeness@' of an electoral rule is whether or not the rule responds positively to changes in individuals' preferences, that is, whether or not the rule is monotonic. By explicitly considering electoral rules in the context of a complete electoral system--voting, selection of legislature, and legislative choice of policy--we argue that monotonicity in electoral systems is a nonissue: depending on the behavioral model governing individual decision making, either everything is monotonic or nothing is monotonic.

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