Access

You are not currently logged in.

Access your personal account or get JSTOR access through your library or other institution:

login

Log in to your personal account or through your institution.

Citizen Voting Power Under the Electoral College: A Stochastic Model Based on State Voting Patterns

Samuel Merrill, III
SIAM Journal on Applied Mathematics
Vol. 34, No. 2 (Mar., 1978), pp. 376-390
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2100900
Page Count: 15
  • Subscribe ($19.50)
  • Cite this Item
Citizen Voting Power Under the Electoral College: A Stochastic Model Based on State Voting Patterns
Preview not available

Abstract

An empirical measure of marginal citizen voting power in a Presidential election under the Electoral College system is developed which reflects the relative probability that citizens of different states affect the outcomes of Presidential elections over an historical period. The model employs normal probability densities whose parameters are determined by state voting patterns in a sample of Presidential elections. According to this measure, for the period 1900-1972, 50% of the population of the United States had only 26% of the total voting power, compared to 39% for the Banzhaf index, which is based on population alone. The value of the measure of voting power developed in this paper is given for the citizens of each state. This value appears in general to increase with greater heterogeneity of the state voting population, regardless of population size. Finally, confidence intervals for the values are determined and empirical support is offered for the assumptions made in the model.

Page Thumbnails

  • Thumbnail: Page 
376
    376
  • Thumbnail: Page 
377
    377
  • Thumbnail: Page 
378
    378
  • Thumbnail: Page 
379
    379
  • Thumbnail: Page 
380
    380
  • Thumbnail: Page 
381
    381
  • Thumbnail: Page 
382
    382
  • Thumbnail: Page 
383
    383
  • Thumbnail: Page 
384
    384
  • Thumbnail: Page 
385
    385
  • Thumbnail: Page 
386
    386
  • Thumbnail: Page 
387
    387
  • Thumbnail: Page 
388
    388
  • Thumbnail: Page 
389
    389
  • Thumbnail: Page 
390
    390