Direct election is a term describing a system of choosing political officeholders in which the voters directly cast ballots for the person, persons or political party that they desire to see elected. The method by which the winner or winners of a direct election are chosen depends upon the electoral system used. The most commonly used systems are the plurality system and the two round system for single winner elections, such as a presidential election, and party-list proportional representation for the election of a legislature.
By contrast, in an indirect election, the voters cast elect an assembly which in turn elects the officeholder in question.This is when the electoral college makes final decisions in such elections such as the presidential election.
See also 
- Direct election republican model (Australia)
- A Handbook of Electoral System Design from International IDEA
- Electoral Design Reference Materials from the ACE Project
- ACE Electoral Knowledge Network Expert site providing encyclopedia on Electoral Systems and Management, country by country data, a library of electoral materials, latest election news, the opportunity to submit questions to a network of electoral experts, and a forum to discuss all of the above
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