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MoveOn "primary" used Approval Voting

In all the hoopla over Howard Dean winning the MoveOn.org PAC online straw poll, most (but not Nathan Newman) have overlooked the second question:

Please select all of the candidates who you would enthusiastically support in the 2004 general election against George W. Bush, if chosen as the Democratic Party nominee next summer after the Democratic Primaries:

(Choose as many as you like.)

That is a classic use of the Approval Voting system. It allows voters to choose among several candidates, express their approval for more than one, and come up with a result showing the most approved candidate.

The MoveOn "first past the post" results were Dean, Kucinich, Kerry. But the MoveOn members were willing to support enthusiastically the following: Dean, Kerry, Kucinich, Edwards, Gephardt, and Braun.

So for all the spin about Kerry losing big among the supposedly leftist voters of MoveOn is this fact, 3/4 of all the MoveOn voters would enthusiastically support him.


28% of the voters wouldn't enthusiactically support anyone. All voting systems have to have a winner. The Approval system just allows us to see how close someone else is. And it shows hat Kerry is close behind Dean.