There is a lot of talk now in Lebanon about the Proportional Representation (PR) elections system, and whether to adopt an election system based on it in the next general elections 2013.
The idea is being faced with mixed stances from the different parties, with a main opposition from Walid Jumblatt. One thing is sure about Proportional Representational system that it is a fairer system that represents parties according to their “proportion” and gives access to parliament to the smaller parties and independents.
I wanted to see how the parliament would look like in 2013 if a PR system was adopted, so I have done a small study based on the 2009 elections results.
I tried to be as logical as possible in my assumptions in this study, but please feedback anything you might have. It took some time to compile these numbers. My methodology was based on the following assumptions:
- 2009 elections results were used
- Lebanon is one electoral constituency
- March 8 and March 14 are able to form national candidates complete lists against each other
- No small party that is known to be under any of the current umbrellas (M8 or M14) is running independently in 2013
- Same 2009 turn out rate is assumed which was considered high in Lebanon (>50%)
- Methodology was based on summing up the votes for each alliance in each district to know the results of all-over Lebanon
- Expats votes are not included, which is a new phenomenon to be introduced
- Votes in each district for each alliance was taken to be the maximum votes of their “highest candidate” multiplied by 0.92
- O.92 is an arbitrary coefficient which represents the real effectiveness of that alliance in voting for the whole list. It discounts as well any non-partisan or independent voting for that highest vote in that district
- The coefficient helps bringing down the votes of “maximum candidate” to same level of his/her partisan colleagues in that area
- Independent votes are what’s left in each district (=Total Voters – M8 – M14)
- So the coefficient will impact the level of independent voting, but different iterations were made to ensure they are not negative in any district!
- I hope it makes sense to you, because I think it’s realistic and logical, although it’s an empirical number.
- Najib Mikati (anti-Hariri) is assumed to be running with March 8, while Misbah Ahdab, Michel El Murr, Walid Jumblatt and Michel Sleiman (anti-Aoun) are assumed to be running with March 14.
So this the look-ahead for the 2013 election on a PR system, although the devil is in the details. We don’t know yet how the details of this new law would look, like how many top lists the system will pass or other variables, but let’s worry about the top two lists for now according to the reasonable above assumptions (please click to enlarge charts).
Total Results of Each Alliance in Each District:
Main Elections Results All Over Lebanon
Main Elections Results in March 8 (anti-Western Camp) Dominant Areas:
Main Elections Results in March 14 (pro-Western Camp) Dominant Areas:
Map of Regional Wins of Both March 8 and March 14 Camps:
Seats Distribution On The Current System:
Seats Distribution On The Proportional Representation System:
As I mentioned above, the PR system is a fair system which represents proportionally the actual number of voters and lower the barriers for the new entrants, but as we can see in the last two pie charts, the numbers are not in favour of March 14.
The first two charts show, expectedly, that the bulk of March 8 votes are coming from the South and Baalbek / Hermel, while the bulk of March 14 votes are coming from Beirut and the North.
The last two charts show that March 14 can take the majority in the current system, but less likely in a PR system. Hezbollah and Michel Aoun will be the biggest winners in 2013 if a PR system was adopted.
Now Walid Jumblatt will need some convincing…