Talk:One man, one vote

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Might be nice to mention the Terry Pratchett parody: Ankh-Morpork had dallied with many forms of government and had ended up with that form of democracy known as One Man, One Vote. The Patrician was the Man; he had the Vote.

Or from random ballot: "The random ballot voting method takes the one person one vote principle to an extreme by only counting the vote of one person. In an election or referendum, the ballot of a single voter is selected at random, and that ballot decides the result of the election."

Political Emancipation[edit]

The wiki page Political_emancipation could also use some attention. Currently it is only a stub. Particularly the explanation of the term 'political emancipation' entailing 'equal status of individual citizens in relation to the state, equality before the law, regardless of religion, property, or other “private” characteristics of individual persons' is construed to be an 'opinion' and 'not delivering a neutral point of view.' Does anyone have more information on the word 'emancipation' also being used in the political context of establishing (or any step moving towards) equality in light of the law? Inserting the Voting Rights Act as such a step of political emancipation, for instance, was repeatedly erased.

The question one could pose, is: When there have been only 3 African-American Senators in modern times (out of more than the 1500 Senators in total), would you say that political emancipation has been achieved?

I don't know who you are (you should sign your name) or why you're making these comments here, but what are you talking about? Any of us can vote and any of us can run and what more do you want? You want to say that, if my people are 12% of the populashun that we need to get 12% of the senators? And if we do that for senators, then why not teachers, firemans, police, presidents, and NBA players? Is that what you want? The Real Rodney King 19:42, 26 December 2006 (UTC)

Origins of phrase[edit]

These introductory comments are simply wrong, and appear to me to be original research. The origins of OMOV are correctly alluded to later in the article. 18:39, 26 December 2006 (UTC)

Much better now. 19:35, 26 December 2006 (UTC)

Proposed move[edit]

I strongly recommend moving this page to "One man, one vote." In practical terms, it will make no difference, since redirects exist already and can exist the other way as well. But I tell you what—I came across this page only by hitting "random article", and was very confused at first. As a sometimes-student of political science (admittedly, it's been a few years), I've never heard anyone say "O-M-O-V" (though I've seen it written a couple of times). Look, people who are into this topic say "one man, one vote." Period. It's not even as easy to say "OMOV" as it is to say "one man, one vote". I'll await comments before making the move. Unschool 03:13, 27 December 2006 (UTC)

Northern Ireland - Some perspective, please[edit]

What does this mean?

*When Northern Ireland came into being, it adopted the same political system which was in place at that time in Westminster. However, whilst the British parliament updated its system some years after Northern Ireland had set up its devolved government, the system in the province remained the same.

To those of us not intimately familiar with the subject, the above entry does absolutely nothing to clarify matters. It is so vague, so broad, as to approach the quality of a non sequitur. Without some clarification, it will need to be deleted. Unschool 23:07, 27 January 2007 (UTC)

The article as a whole is messy because this is a statement that means different things in different parts of the world. In the US it seems "One man, one vote" is a bit of a misnomer as the focus is on apportionment - perhaps "one man, one vote, one value" is what is meant (although many would argue that a vote in an ultra marginal constituency has more "value" than one in a rock solid safe seat). But apportionment is a very different thing from franchise entitlement.
In the UK "One man/person, one vote" has historically meant that every citizen should be entitled to vote and to have an equal number of votes. Historically the Westminster Parliament was elected by those with a sufficient interest in the counties, boroughs and universities entitled to send members (in the counties it was to hold property worth 40 shillings freehold, the borough franchises were all over the place and the universities had a graduate franchise) and those who qualified for the franchise for more than one constituency (e.g. owners of business premises or university graduates) were entitled to vote in all of them. (This was somewhat tempered as travel limited the number that one could physically get to, whilst many constitencies were not contested in elections.)
As time went on the focus of attention moved from places being enfranchised to the electorates and many argued that a citizen should only be able to vote for one representative. Successive changes to both the Westminster (completed 1948) and local government franchise (completed around the same time, bar the Corporation of London) have moved to a system whereby entitlement to vote is based solely on one's place of residence. (It does create the interesting problem that many people who work outside their district of residence, particularly those in suburbs and commuter towns, have no say in elections to local government bodies who make major decisions impacting on them. This is the reason why the Corporation of London, which adminsters an area with less than 10,000 residents but huge financial resources, retains the business franchise.)
When Northern Ireland was created in 1921 it retained the same ratepayer franchise for local government that was then in common use in the rest of the UK. However unlike the rest it didn't change to a "one person, one vote" system in the 1940s. It was alleged that this gave a bias to Unionists as Protestants were more likely to qualify for extra votes than Catholics, although it seems the practical effect of this on control of councils was limited - see [1]. However it gave the Civil Rights movement one of the best slogans for their reform demands - "One man, one vote". Timrollpickering 15:36, 1 July 2007 (UTC)

OMOV as an argument against voting systems other than plurality[edit]

This text was removed:

In Alaska, when instant runoff voting was being proposed, League of Women Voters President Cheryl Jebe said, "It appears to compromise the well-established principle of one person, one vote, established by the United States Supreme Court."[1]

However, it appears to still be useful information. OMOV is frequently used as a rationale against implementing voting systems other than plurality (e.g. approval voting, instant-runoff voting, cumulative voting, etc.) Perhaps we can present those arguments and their rebuttals? (talk) 16:25, 25 March 2008 (UTC)

The above edit was indeed by a blocked user, and it was removed by another blocked user. I've verified the source, and the edit is useful. I reverted it back.--Abd (talk) 18:40, 29 March 2008 (UTC)
It doesn't really explain what she means though. There's a lot of crap talked about Alternative Vote (and the article is poorly researched - the "Lord Mayor of London" is not directly elected and the Mayor of London is elected by Supplementary Vote which is different), with some people claiming it gives some voters more than others when it doesn't - it just transfers their single vote if their initial choice of candidate is utterly unsuccessful. Every voter has the same voting power in determing the final outcome in the seat. Timrollpickering (talk) 20:06, 29 March 2008 (UTC)

Instant-runoff voting is more congruent with OPOV than plurality or first past the post. It also reduces the spoiler effect to negligible, and makes strategic and tactical voting virtually impossible. Dualus (talk) 23:55, 3 November 2011 (UTC)

US Senate / State Senates[edit]

The article gets a bit confused in this paragraph:

Additionally, in most US states, electoral districts for seats in the upper house or Senate were ostensibly created at least partially on the basis of geography, rather than population. Whereas lower house seats might or might not be reapportioned on a decennial basis, such as those of the US House of Representatives, in most states, state senate district boundaries were never redrawn. As the United States became more urban, this led to the dilution of the votes of urban voters when casting ballots for state senate seats. A city dweller's vote had less influence on the make-up of the state legislature than did a rural inhabitant's.

Is this about states or federal voting? Some states do not have upper houses or senates, and US senate seats were never selected based on population, there were two seats for each state. So what exactly does that paragraph mean? Seriously, for the US senate at least, "One man, one vote" has never been true. Gront (talk) 02:59, 3 July 2008 (UTC)

The US Senate was not originally directly elected but selected by the state legislatures because they represent the states/state governments (the German upper house, the Bundesrat, operates on this principle even more explicitly). Direct election of Senators came about as a combination of populist demands and legislatures regularly being deadlocked over Senator selection, not because of a belief they are meant to be directly representing the people (that's the House of Representatives's job).
IIRC 49 of the 50 US states have an upper house. Some were constructed on a non constituency basis - e.g. "1 senator per county". Others did start off with constituencies aiming for something like equal sized seats but didn't redraw the boundaries resulting in massive variance of the number of electors. (Something else that often confuses matters is that the non-voting population is rarely proportionally distributed to the voting and often people freely confuse population, those eligible to vote, those enrolled to vote and those actually voting in discussions on apportionment.)
The paragraph is also falling into the trap of assuming a voter's influence on the election is determined by the size of the seat they're in. A voter in a 20,000 constituency that is rock solid for one party has "less influence on the make-up of the state legislature" than one in a 100,000 constituency that is a key marginal where control of the legislature often hinges. Timrollpickering (talk) 17:19, 28 August 2008 (UTC)

Requested move[edit]

The following discussion is an archived discussion of the proposal. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on the talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

No consensus to move. Vegaswikian (talk) 18:43, 10 November 2011 (UTC)

One man, one voteOne person, one vote – Remove gender bias. Per WP:NC, 923,000 Google hits for the proposed name, versus 1.5 million for the current name. Dualus (talk) 23:54, 3 November 2011 (UTC)

  • Oppose The term had its highest prominence when such exactitude was not a concern. We should use the most common form of it, not translate it for modern sensibilities. Timrollpickering (talk) 00:12, 4 November 2011 (UTC)
  • Oppose I get 36,800 Google News hits for "one man, one vote", 25,200 for "one person, one vote". "One man, one vote" is also the more common search term, according to Google Insights. Just to be complete, here is an ngram. Kauffner (talk) 09:01, 4 November 2011 (UTC)
  • I'm not sure where the gender bias is here. Although one meaning of man is "male person", the use of man for "all humans collectively; mankind" is quite common. I doubt anyone at this point would believe that "one man, one vote" refers to the former and not the latter. —  AjaxSmack  00:49, 5 November 2011 (UTC)
  • I'm minded to support - although "one man, one vote" is historically the more common term, "one person, one vote" is more common on Google Books in the last 5 years.[2][3] The problem is that the article mostly talks about historical usage - it could do with more on current uses of the phrase (either version). (Interestingly, I note that universal suffrage doesn't even link here.) (talk) 09:09, 5 November 2011 (UTC)
  • Oppose. Historically, there has been gender bias in voting. But we should go with the most common term, which is "one man, one vote." StAnselm (talk) 23:52, 9 November 2011 (UTC)
The above discussion is preserved as an archive of the proposal. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on this talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.


Please provide (a) definition(s) in the introduction. (talk) 15:27, 20 November 2012 (UTC)

Lead does not reflect article[edit]

The Lead has most content related to use of this phrase in the decolonisation era in less developed countries, but does not discuss these at all in the body of the article, which is devoted to the meaning of the phrase and changes in apportionment in UK, US and Northern Ireland. If the article is to stay as is, the Lead needs to change. If the Lead was to address the topic, the article needs to be expanded.Parkwells (talk) 14:33, 26 February 2014 (UTC)

  1. ^