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  Sun, Apr 29, 2007
Ireland general election set for May 24
Irish Prime Minister Bertie Ahern has called a general election for the 30th Dáil, which will be held on Thursday, May 24, 2007. Under the terms of the Electoral (Amendment) Act 2005, the size of Dáil Éireann remains unchanged at 166 seats, but constituency boundaries have been redrawn and the number of constituencies will increase from 42 to 43: four existing constituencies (Longford-Roscommon, Meath, Sligo-Leitrim and Westmeath) have been abolished and replaced with five new constituencies (Longford-Westmeath, Meath East, Meath West, Roscommon-South Leitrim and Sligo-North Leitrim). In addition, Cork North Central and Dublin North-Central lose a seat each, while Dublin Mid-West and Kildare North gain one apiece.

Members of Dáil Éireann are elected by the Single Transferable Vote (STV) system of proportional representation, reviewed in Part I of Parliamentary Elections in Ireland - Elections to Dáil Éireann (House of Representatives). The full text of the Electoral (Amendment) Act 2005 is available here (link to the Irish Statute Book website); the Constituency Commission website has additional information on the constituency boundary review.

STV, which is also used in Assembly and local elections in Northern Ireland, as well as parliamentary elections in Malta, will be introduced in Scotland this Thursday for local government elections (or re-introduced if its use in Scottish Education authorities elections from 1919 to 1928 is taken into account). Australia, which is expected to hold a general election later this year, also uses STV for Senate elections.

In other election-related news, the Irish Times reports that an alternative government coalition made up of Fine Gael and Labour, with the possible support of the Greens, now stands narrowly ahead of the ruling Fianna Fáil-Progressive Democrats coalition.

posted by Manuel Álvarez-Rivera : 04/29/2007 20:17 | permanent link

  Sat, Apr 28, 2007
Elections to the Scottish Parliament and the National Assembly for Wales
Voters in Scotland and Wales will be heading to the polls next Thursday, May 3 to choose members of their respective devolved legislatures. Elections to the Scottish Parliament and the National Assembly for Wales has an overview of the Additional Member System (AMS) of proportional representation (PR) introduced in 1999 to elect both assemblies (the first legislative bodies in Great Britain proper to be elected by PR), with 1999 and 2003 election results.

Scottish voters will also choose members of 32 local councils. Under the terms of the Local Governance (Scotland) Act of 2004, councillors will be elected by the Single Transferable Vote (STV) system of proportional representation. Elections in Northern Ireland have been carried out by STV since 1973 (where it was previously used in 1921-29), but the 2007 Scottish local government elections will be the first universal suffrage contests in Great Britain proper to be held under this system, which is also used in Ireland since 1921.

In fact, Scotland now has four different electoral systems in operation, namely: first-past-the-post (FPTP) voting for elections to the U.K. House of Commons; AMS for elections to the Scottish Parliament; STV for local government elections; and closed list proportional representation for European Parliament elections.

In Wales, the National Assembly election will take place under recently revised constituency boundaries. Professors Colin Rallings and Michael Thrasher of the University of Plymouth have estimated that if the 2003 election had been carried out under the new boundaries, the Labour Party would have lost one constituency seat (Aberconwy) to the nationalist Plaid Cymru (PC; Party of Wales), but in turn the latter would have lost a seat in the North Wales region to the Conservatives. In all, Labour would have lost a seat to the Conservative Party, and would have ended up with less than half the seats in the National Assembly.

Local government elections will also be taking place in 312 local authorities in England.

posted by Manuel Álvarez-Rivera : 04/28/2007 00:00 | permanent link

  Sun, Apr 22, 2007
France 2007 Presidential Election
France holds a presidential election today, and I'm covering the event on Global Economy Matters, under An uncertain presidential election in France, complementing the information available on Presidential Elections in France.

Update

Preliminary 2007 presidential election results are now available on my Global Economy Matters posting and in Presidential Elections in France.

Sarko-Ségo, or the 2007 French presidential runoff race, also on Global Economy Matters, covers the second round of voting.

posted by Manuel Álvarez-Rivera : 04/22/2007 06:29 | permanent link