What are the different types of electoral systems?

By Ritesh|Updated : September 1st, 2022

The different types of electoral systems are - elections with a plurality of votes, pictorial representation, plurality electoral systems, majority electoral systems, and proportional representation. Worldwide, there are three different types of electoral systems in use.

Four Different Types of Electoral Systems

Elections with a plurality of votes:

  • The candidate with the most votes wins the seat. Another name for it is first-past-the-post voting.
  • In a majority electoral system, a candidate must receive a majority vote (greater than 50%).
  • A majority, or 50% plus 1, is required to win in a majority system.
  • Proportional representation: The number of seats a political party will hold is determined by the party's votes.

Plurality electoral systems:

  • The United States primarily uses a plurality election system called "first-past-the-post" or "winner-takes-all."
  • The candidate who obtains the most votes is given the seat.
  • A candidate is not required to receive a majority (greater than 50%).
  • Instead, the candidate with the most votes is declared the victor, even if that number is less than 50%.

Majority electoral systems:

  • In a plurality system, the victor need only receive more than 50% of the votes to prevail.
  • But they do under a society where the majority rules.
  • Systems requiring a majority, or 50% plus one vote, are called "second ballot" systems.
  • If none of the candidates achieves support, a second election takes place.

Proportional representation:

  • The most popular election system today is called proportional representation (PR).
  • It converts the proportion of all votes a political party receives into the number of seats that party will hold in the legislature.
  • For instance, a party will hold 40% of the seats in parliament if they earn 40% of the vote.

Summary:

What are the different types of electoral systems?

The different types of electoral systems are - pictorial representation, elections with a plurality of votes, majority electoral systems, plurality electoral systems, and proportional representation.

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