Friday, January 27, 2006

Hamas Victory : the Artificial Sweep

Hamas's stunning victory and the lopsided Parliament is in large part the result of an electoral system that gives results even more disproportionate than the US or Canadian First-Past-The-Post system.

The Palestinian system featured two tiers (1) multi-member districts and (2) a national proportional list. The multi-member districts reward parties with greater discipline and punish ticket- splitting. More than 100 Fatah members ran as independents and there were several smaller lists which appealed to Fatah voters

Hamas has won apparently 76 seats, Fatah 43, and other parties and independents 13.

Here are the national proportional results which give a far different picture of public opinion in Palestine.

Hamas 434,817 (30 seats)

Fatah Movement 403,458 (27 seats)

Martyr Abu Ali Mustafa (PFLP) 41,671 (3 seats)

The Alternative 28,779 (coalition of the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine (DFLP), the Palestinian People's Party, and the Palestinian Democratic Union Party) (2 seats)

Independent Palestine (Mustafa Barghouti) 26,554 (2 seats)

The Third Way 23,513 ( 2 seats)

(Doesn't include votes for list that didn't make the threshold.)

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