by Clarence Hoag and George Hallett

The Macmillan Company, New York, 1926








§ 117. We shall make no attempt in this chapter 1 to deal with the history of P. R. comprehensively. Most of our readers will probably prefer a bird's eye view. 

The Earliest Proposals. Inquiry in regard to scientific methods of electing representative bodies began as early as the latter part of the 18th century, perhaps earlier. The earliest thinkers on the subject of whom we know were in France and England

The earliest statement of the proportional ideal that we have found was made by Mirabeau in 1789. In a speech before the Assembly of Provence on January 30th of that year he declared: "A representative body is to the nation what a chart is for the physical configuration of its soil: in all its parts, and as a whole, the representative body should at all times present a reduced picture of the people¾ their opinions, aspirations, and wishes, and that presentation should bear the relative proportion to the original precisely as a map brings before us mountains and dales, rivers and lakes, forests and plains, cities and towns. The finer should not be crushed out by the more massive substance, and the latter not be excluded; the value of each element  is dependent upon its importance to the whole and for the whole." 2 

The draft of a constitution presented to the French National Convention on February 15 and 16, 1793, written by Condorcet, provided that each voter should have only two votes for the election board of his district, though the number to be elected might be as great as eighteen. Although in a large district such a system would allow several different elements to share in the election, it would not, as we explained in §44, assure true proportional representation. 

On June 24th of the same year Saint-Just proposed to the Convention for parliamentary elections the single non-transferable vote 3 with all France as one district. This, so far as we know, is the earliest definite public proposal of a truly proportional system of election. It was quickly suppressed by the violent opposition of Robespierre

The earliest published proposal, apparently, of a proportional system which protects the voter from the danger of wasting his vote was that of the French mathematician Gergonne. In 1820 he published in the Annales de Mathématiques 4 of which he himself was editor, an article entitled "Arithmétique politique. Sur les élections et le système représentatif," in which he said: "At the elections the voters would group themselves freely according to their opinions, their interests, or their desires, and any citizen would become a Deputy from the department in the elective chamber who bore a mandate from two hundred voters." 5 

Gergonne suggested no method of putting this idea into effect. 

§ 118. Thomas Wright Hill. About the same time the idea was independently carried much farther by a schoolmaster of Kidderminster and Birmingham, England, Thomas Wright Hill (1763-1851), best known as the father of four eminent sons, including Sir Rowland Hill, founder of the modern postal system. To Thomas Wright Hill belongs, we believe, the great honor of being the first inventor of the system known as proportional representation with the single transferable vote. The evidence in support of this conclusion, as well as a short account of Thomas Wright Hill's life and work, is to be found in the first volume of the Life of Sir Rowland Hill by George Birkbeck Hill, London, 1880. There we find, on page 69, the following passage from the diary of Rowland Hill, then a young man of twenty-five teaching in his father's school in Birmingham:


"November, 1821.—Since February, which is the date of the last entry in this book, I have delivered two lectures before the Society for Literary and Scientific Improvement; one on Comets and the Asteroids, the other on the Fixed Stars. 

"We have adopted a plan of electing a committee which secures a very exact representation of the whole body. Every member is returned by unanimous votes, and he may be recalled at any moment by a resolution of the majority of his constituents, who may then return another representative, but this must be done by a unanimous vote. Very much to my surprise, I was the first member elected."

The biographer continues: "The plan of election had been devised by his father, who, as I have already said, was strongly in favour of the representation of minorities. I have before me a copy of the laws of this society. The tenth, in which the mode of election is described, I give below: 

"At the first meeting in April, and also in October, a Committee shall be elected, which shall consist of at least one-fifth of the members of the Society. The mode of election shall be as follows: A ticket shall be delivered to each member present, with his own name at the head of it, immediately under which he shall write the name of the member whom he may wish to represent him in the Committee. The votes thus given shall be delivered to the president, who, after having assorted them, shall report to the meeting the number of votes given for each nominee. Every one who has five votes shall be declared a member of the Committee; if there are more than five votes given to any one person, the surplus votes (to be selected by lot) shall be returned to the electors whose name they bear, for the purpose of their making other nominations, and this process shall be repeated until no surplus votes remain, when all the inefficient votes shall be returned to the respective electors, and the same routine shall be gone through a second time, and also a third time if necessary; when if a number is elected, equal in all to one-half of the number of which the Committee should consist, they shall be a Committee; and if at the close of the meeting the number is not filled up, by unanimous votes of five for each member of the Committee, given by those persons whose votes were returned to them at the end of the third election, then this Committee shall have the power, and shall be required, to choose persons to fill up their number; and the constituents of each member so elected shall, if necessary, be determined by lot. The President, Secretary, and Treasurer, all for the time being, shall be members of the Committee, ex-officio, whether elected or not. In the intervals between the general elections, it shall be competent to any four members of the society, by a joint nomination, in a book to be opened for the purpose, to appoint a representative in the ensuing Committee; such appointment being made shall not be withdrawn, nor shall the appointees give any vote in the choice of a Committee-man, as such, until after the next election. A register shall be kept by the Secretary of the constituents of every member of the Committee; and the constituents of any member, except those appointed by the Committee (upon whose dismissal that body may exercise a negative), shall have the power of withdrawing their representative, by a vote of their majority, of which vote notice in writing shall be given (subscribed by the persons composing such majority) both to the member so dismissed, and to the Chairman of the Committee; and in the case of a vacancy occasioned by a dismissal as above, or by any other cause, the constituents of the member whose place becomes vacant, may elect another in his stead, by a unanimous vote, but not otherwise; if such election be not made within a fortnight after the vacancy has occurred, the appointment shall devolve upon the Committee." 

This, evidently, is the system of P. R. with the single transferable vote. It falls short in not providing for the expression on one ballot of several choices and is therefore not suited to public elections with secret voting. But, on the other hand, it is superior in principle to the first plans which many years later did make such provision. Unlike those plans it provides not only for the transfer of surplus votes but also for the transfer of votes from weaker to stronger candidates. 

That the Hills appreciated the significance of the principle they had discovered is strongly indicated by the following passages: 

"The objects proposed in arranging the plan of choosing the Committee are: 

"lst. A fair representation (as near as can be) of all the classes of which the general body is composed. 

"2nd. Responsibility on the part of the members of the Committee. 

"To obtain the first of these objects, it has been provided that each member of the Committee shall be chosen by a section only of the society; and, as will appear upon examination, opportunity is afforded, in forming the sections, for every voter to class himself with those whose views most resemble his own." From a sheet of paper in Sir Rowland Hill's handwriting, found by his biographer, and quoted on p. 70 of the first volume of the Life.

"With views like these, the 'Society for Literary and Scientific Improvement' have been anxious to establish a mode of electing the Committee, that should secure (as nearly as possible), an accurate representation of the whole body; not only because it appeared reasonable that the members would feel interested in the welfare of the Institution, in proportion as the arrangements and regulations met their own views and wishes, but because experience proves that, owing to imperfect methods of choosing those who are to direct the affairs of a society, the whole sway sometimes gets into the hands of a small party, and is exercised, perhaps unconsciously, in a way that renders many persons indifferent, and alienates others, until all becomes listlessness, decay, and dissolution." From the Preface to the Laws of the Society for Literary and Scientific Improvement, given as Appendix B in the first volume of the Life.

Thomas Wright Hill died in 1851, before Hare and Andrae, the persons usually credited with the first invention of his system, had brought it to the attention of the public.

§119. First Application of the Principle to Public Elections. The first application of the principle of proportional representation to public elections was made in 1839 (sic) [the correct date, 1840, is shown four paragraphs down] in Adelaide, South Australia, at that time a struggling colony of a few hundred inhabitants. Rowland Hill was then Secretary of the Colonization Commission of South Australia, and it was at his suggestion that the application was made. In his Prefatory Memoir to the History of Penny Postage (quoted in the Life by George Birkbeck Hill, Volume I, p. 223) he says: "As regards the political system of the colony [South Australia], I may be allowed to mention that when the Commissioners, in their third annual report, recommended Government to grant it municipal institutions, the recommendation included at my suggestion the plan which has already been spoken of as devised by my father many years before, and has recently been more known to the world in connection with the name of Mr. Hare. This plan was adopted at the time, though abandoned at a later period."

Actually, however, the form used was not the transferable vote of Thomas Wright Hill (Rowland Hill’s father) and Thomas Hare, but a simpler form essentially the same as that recommended by Gergonne.6 Section X of the "Act to Institute a Municipal Corporation for the City of Adelaide" reads as follows:

X. That it shall be competent to the electors by voluntary classification to form themselves into as many electoral sections or quorums as there are members to be elected, and each of these quorums may, provided they can agree upon a unanimous vote, return one member to the common Council, and on the said first appointed day, between the hours of ten o'clock of the forenoon and 4 o'clock of the afternoon, and at the polling place or places appointed as aforesaid, when and as often as any number of qualified electors, amounting to the proportion required to constitute such quorum as aforesaid shall assemble and appear personally at the poll and declare their unanimous vote in favor of any single candidate, the Returning Officer, or such assessor as he may appoint to be for him at such polling place, shall enter in a poll book in the form as nearly as may be of the Schedule C hereto annexed the names of the electors in every such quorum, respectively specifying under proper columns the names of the candidates so voted for, and at four o'clock in the afternoon the assessors if acting at separate polling places shall certify and seal their respective poll books and proceed to deliver them to the said Returning Officer, and the said Returning Officer shall forthwith scrutinize the poll books and declare duly returned to the common Council all members so elected by the unanimous votes of quorums respectively: Provided always that no elector voting with any such quorum in the return of a member as aforesaid shall be competent to vote at the subsequent part of the election, as hereinafter provided, or for more than one candidate.

The Act goes on to prescribe that seats in the Council not filled by the unanimous "electoral quorums," as provided for in Section X, shall be filled "by ordinary election," that is, presumably, by ordinary block vote on the part of those voters who have not already helped to elect a member under the provisions of Section X.

The ideas behind this provision are clearly set forth in the following passage in the Third Annual Report of the Colonization Commissioners for South Australia, 1839, which, though signed by the nine commissioners, was doubtless written by Rowland Hill, the Secretary. "We would recommend, that the towns in South Australia respectively, as they acquire a population of 2,000, may, upon application to the Governor and Council of the Province, obtain a municipal constitution, consisting of a Common Council of at least 15 members, a body of Aldermen of at least three members, and a Mayor; the Common Council to be elected by the ratepayers, the Aldermen by the Council, and the Mayor by the Aldermen. And in order to counteract the tendency to exasperated party feeling which is sometimes found to exist in small communities, as well as to make timely provision against the arbitrary power which under popular governments the majority exercise over the minority, we would further venture to recommend, that the municipal elections may be so conducted that a majority of the ratepayers may not have the power to exclude the minority from returning their due proportion of members to the Common Council. In order to accomplish this desirable object it is proposed that the municipal elections be conducted in the following manner. When the number of which the Common Council may consist is determined, and the number of electors ascertained, then the electors shall, by voluntary classification, form themselves into as many equal electoral sections or quorums as there are members to be elected; and each of these equal quorums shall, provided they can agree upon a unanimous vote, return one member to the Common Council. By this mode of election, parties will bear the same proportion to each other in the Council which they may bear in the elective body. 7 And the minority will be secure of being fairly and fully represented. In whatever might be the numbers of Common Councilmen to be chosen, 15 or 20 or 30, a minority consisting of a 15th or a 20th or a 30th of the whole electoral body might form themselves into an electoral quorum, and return a member of their own party. A minority sufficient to form two of the equal quorums into which the electors might be divisible would be able to return two members to advocate their principles, and so on. And we would further recommend that the Aldermen be elected by the Council in the same manner that the Council is elected by the ratepayers; that the election of Councillors, Aldermen and Mayor shall take place once in three years, and that the Mayor and Aldermen shall be ex-officio magistrates within the municipality." 

The innovation is referred to in Chapter III of the Autobiography of Catherine Helen Spence, who was living in Australia, a young girl, at the time. "Into the municipal bill," wrote Miss Spence, 8 "drawn up under the superintendence of Rowland Hill (afterwards the great post-office reformer, but then the Secretary of the Colonization Commissioner[s] for South Australia), he had introduced a clause providing for proportional representation at the option of the ratepayers. The twentieth part of the Adelaide ratepayers by uniting their votes upon one man, instead of voting for 18, 9 could on the day before the ordinary election appear and declare this their intention, and he would be a Councillor on their votes. In the first election, November, 1840, two such quorums elected two Councillors. The workmen in Borrow and Goodear's building elected their foreman, and another quorum of citizens elected Mr. William Senden; and this was the first quota representation 10 in the world. My father explained this unique provision to me at the time, and showed its bearings for minority representation." 

§120. The First List Systems. About this time the list type of proportional representation, which has since been adopted so widely in Europe, began to be considered. It was proposed and discussed in private meetings by Victor Considérant, the celebrated disciple of Fourier, as early as 1834. In 1842 it was proposed to the Council of the canton of Geneva, at the suggestion of Considérant, then in Switzerland, for use in the election of a proposed Constituent Assembly. In 1844 it was set forth by Thomas Gilpin of Philadelphia, in a form superior to Considérant's, in the pamphlet parts of which we have reproduced in Appendix VIII. This pamphlet of Gilpin's was apparently the first explanation of a thoroughgoing proportional system that was ever printed. In 1846 Considérant, again in Switzerland, set forth his system, with a masterly defense of the general principle of proportional representation, in a memorial addressed to the Constituent Assembly of Geneva set up in that year. "The proposition excited the astonishment of the assembly, and had no other effect than to provoke a smile." 11 Though Gilpin's system was much more fully developed than Considérant's, it was the latter's memorial of 1846, not Gilpin's pamphlet, which influenced the Swiss writer Morin, who published a book on the list system in 1861, and the founders of the Association Reformiste of Geneva, founded in 1865, who in turn secured the adoption of a list system in Ticino, Geneva, and other cantons of Switzerland. In all probability Gilpin's work was not seen by anybody in Switzerland until it was reprinted by the American Academy of Political Science about half a century after its first appearance. So far as we know, Considérant and Gilpin never heard of each other's work in proportional representation. 

§121. Andrae. The first public proportional elections carried out by ballot were held in Denmark in 1856. The method used was a form of the single transferable vote independently devised by Carl Christopher Georg Andrae, then Minister of Finance. 

Andrae intended his method to be applied at large to the election of the members of the Rigsraad or Supreme Legislative Council of the federated realm of Denmark, including Schleswig and Holstein, who were to be directly elected under the Constitution of 1855. Against Andrae's protest the territory was divided into several districts. Since, of the twenty-nine members popularly elected, the three from Schleswig were elected from single-member districts, Andrae's proportional system affected only the election of twenty-six at the polls. It was used also, however, for twenty-nine of the thirty additional members who were elected by the members of the representative assemblies of the several states of the federated realm. Besides the 59 members we have mentioned the Rigsraad contained 20 members named by the Crown and one elected by the nobles and landowners of Lauenburg. The Andrae system thus applied to the election of 55 out of a total membership of 80. 12 The property qualifications were so stringent that the number of ballots cast even in the direct elections was small.  

The election provisions, in sections 22-26 of the Constitution of 1855, were as follows: 13 

SECTION 22, The election is opened by the chairman, and it commences with his counting the ballots sent in. The resulting number is divided by the number of members to be elected to the Legislature [Rigsraad] by the electoral district; and the quotient hereby obtained becomes, after the rejection of any fraction that may be present, the electoral basis in the manner prescribed by the following section. 

SECTION 23. After placing the ballots in an urn, and mixing them there, the chairman draws them out one by one and provides them with serial numbers and reads aloud the top name of each ballot, which name is at the same time recorded by two other members of the electoral committee. Ballots on which the same name is written in the top place are placed together, and as soon as a name has recurred so often that the corresponding votes amount to the quotient determined according to Section 22, the reading of the ballots is stopped. When the number of votes thus recorded has been verified by a second counting, the candidate in question is declared elected. The ballots thus counted and verified are now put aside and not considered any more. Now the reading-out of the remaining ballots is resumed, in such a manner, however, that whenever the name of the candidate already elected appears in first place on any ballot, it is struck out, and the next name is regarded as name number one on that ballot. If the before-mentioned quotient appears again in favor of some other candidate, the procedure just described is taken again, and when this election has been thus determined, the reading-out is continued and the procedure provided followed, care being taken to strike out, when they re-appear, the names of those already elected. In this way the process continues until all the ballots have been read. 

SECTION 24. If in this manner [referring to the machinery of election outlined in the preceding sections] the entire number of elections which the district requires is not obtained, examination shall be made to find those candidates who, after the candidates already elected, have obtained the greatest number of votes read. And from these candidates the remaining seats are filled according to plurality of votes. No candidate, however, shall be elected who has not obtained votes amounting to more than half the quotient beforementioned. In case of candidates' obtaining the same number of votes, and a number that would make them eligible, the choice between such candidates shall be made by lot. 

SECTION 25. In the event that all the seats have not yet been filled, the reading of all the ballots is to be resumed in such a way that the remaining seats are filled by those candidates not already elected whose names are inscribed on the top line of the ballots. These elections are to be determined by simple [Relative] majority of votes. If the number of votes be equal, the decision is to be made by lot. 14  

SECTION 26. When a single member only is to be elected, the method of election prescribed in Sections 22-25 is not followed. Election in such a case is determined by a simple [relative] majority of votes. In the event of equality of votes the decision shall be made by lot. 

Andrae's method was a great advance over any previous one in its provision for the expression of alternative choices on the same ballot. It was inferior to that of Thomas Wright Hill in that it did not provide for the transfer of ballots from defeated candidates. Like Hill's plan it made the quota too large. 15 

There is no evidence, according to his son and biographer, that Andrae received help, either for the fundamental idea or for the details of his system, from any source. So far as is known, he never heard of the suggestion of Saint-Just to the French Convention, of the Hills, of the Adelaide experiment, of the proposal of de Villèle, or of Gilpin's paper before the American Philosophical Society. Gergonne's article in the Annales de Mathèmatique he read only in the period 1859-61. 16 By a law of 1866 Andrae's method was continued in use only for the indirect elections of the Landsting or upper house of Parliament. In that limited application it has remained in force, with some recent improvements, until the present time." 17 

Who was Andrae? He was a profound mathematician and geodesist, an army officer, and a Conservative. For some years, ending in 1854, he was professor of mathematics and mechanics at the national military college. In that year he became Minister of Finance, in 1856 Prime Minister. Though thoroughly convinced of the soundness of his method of electing representatives and ready to defend it in the cabinet or the parliament, he made no effort to bring it to the attention of scientific men and statesmen in other countries, much less to defend his claim as an inventor. He seemed surprised that devising a political method so obvious and so simple should be regarded as reflecting much glory on anybody's intellectual powers. When the Italian statesman Perruzzi and Signora Perruzzi, after visiting Andrae, wrote in the name of the proportionalists of Italy asking him to suggest his system to the Senate of Italy, Andrae replied: "Ce ne sont que des problèmes de haute géodésie qui me tentent. Les seuls articles que je me sens capable d'écrire doivent traiter de la figure de la terre ou de la méthode des moindres carrés, et non pas de la méthode proportionelle." 18 In a letter to his son Poul Andrae in 1871 he wrote: "Frankly, it is ridiculous that a matter really so simple should create such a 'big noise.' There is another instance of human folly." 19

§122. Hare. Shortly after Andrae's system had been put into effect in Denmark it was independently devised by an Englishman, Thomas Hare, who has been widely credited with being its original inventor. Hare, a barrister of London, published in 1857 a pamphlet entitled The Machinery of Representation, in which he explained proportional representation with the single transferable vote and advocated its use for the election of members of Parliament at large throughout the United Kingdom. A second edition of the pamphlet appeared the same year. In 1859, 1861, 1865, and 1873 Hare published successive editions of his book, The Election of Representatives, in which he developed and defended his scheme in elaborate form. In 1861 his system was given an entire chapter, and lauded as "among the very greatest improvements yet made in the theory and practice of government," in John Stuart Mill's masterly work, Considerations on Representative Government. 20 Praised by a thinker honored throughout the western world, Hare became famous himself; and even when, in 1863, the Queen's Secretary of Legation in Copenhagen, Robert Lytton (son of Bulwer the novelist, and afterwards Earl of Lytton) sent home a report on Andrae's similar system, which had been used in public elections before Hare had published his first pamphlet, the prestige of Hare was so great that he held his place in the minds of most men as the principal inventor of the system. 

In its earliest form—until 1865—Hare's system was substantially the same as Andrae's, as advocated by him in 1855, except that its provisions for filling the seats remaining unfilled after the transfer of surplus ballots 21 were less simple and reasonable than those Andrac proposed and preferred. After 1865, however, when Hare adopted the rule for dropping the lowest candidates one after another and transferring their ballots, his system became more complete and excellent than Andrae's. 

Starting with Hare's improved system as a basis, various refinements have been adopted or suggested from time to time. Some of these are incorporated in the American and the British rules set forth in Appendix IV. Others are discussed in Appendix VI. The most important modification and the one most generally accepted is the reduction of the quota—in a five-member district from one-fifth of the total vote, as proposed by Hill, Andrae, and Hare, to barely more than a sixth. This modification was apparently first suggested by H. R. Droop, a London barrister in 1868. Its significance is discussed in Appendix VI (1). 


§ 123. The Spread of the List System. It was over forty years after the appearance of Hare's first work before the single transferable vote was used for public elections anywhere outside of Denmark. Strange as it may seem, the energetic propaganda of Hare and Mill first bore fruit in the adoption and extension of the list forms of P. R. described in Chapter V and Appendix VII. For Hare and Mill were the direct inspiration of the P. R. movement in Switzerland, where the list type of P. R. was first agitated. In 1882 a modified form of the Hare system was proposed for elections in Basel, and the next year its practicability for such elections was demonstrated by the city's chief of police by means of a recount of the official ballots according to the Hare principles.22 The founders of the Association Réformiste of Geneva, already referred to in this chapter, wrote in their report of March 20, 1866: "We have taken as the basis of our study the works of Mr. Hare. Our plan is, in principle, the plan of that writer." 23 

But on further consideration Hare's plan seemed to the Swiss proportionalists "too bold and too foreign to our customs." 24 They therefore began in 1867 to advocate a party list system based on those published by Morin in 1861 and 1862. Long afterwards, in 1895, their eminent leader Ernest Naville wrote: "I do not mean to say that the Swiss reformers considered the list voting as the best in theory. I, for one, would prefer the method which, like that of Mr. Hare, gives the elector a chance of preferential vote without the party official list, for the purpose of realizing better than any other the idea of representation." 25

For many years the Association’s proposals were given scant attention by practical politicians. But when in 1889 electoral injustice in the canton of Ticino gave rise to insurrection, the federal government hastened to offer P. R. as a remedy. How completely successful it proved to be and how it was taken up first by Geneva and then by other cantons, until to-day it is used for most of the legislative elections in the whole nation, has already been told in Chapter V. 

From Switzerland the list system soon spread to other countries. The first to adopt it for national elections were Serbia and Belgium, both of which have used P. R. for most members of their parliaments since 1899. 26 By the outbreak of the World War it was also in use for national elections in Finland (1906), Cuba (1908), Sweden (1909), Portugal 27 (1911), and Bulgaria (1911). During and since the war it has been adopted by other countries in rapid succession until to-day the only large countries on the Continent of Europe that do not use it are France, Russia, Italy, Spain, Albania, Greece, and Turkey. Every one of the conventions which met at the close of the war to draft constitutions for the newly created states decided on a list system of P. R. for national elections. A chronological list of the countries and communities which have adopted such systems will be found in Appendix I (2). Some of their significant experiences have already been told in Chapter V. 28 

In some of the continental countries which do not yet use P.R. (January, 1926) there are influential movements for its adoption. In France P. R. has been championed by statesmen of such varying views as Jaurés, Briand, and Poincaré. In 1919 a P. R. proposal was passed by the Chamber of Deputies but rejected by the Senate. The compromise scheme finally adopted that year has often been called P. R. for the reason that it provides for the application of the principle in districts where certain conditions hold; but its actual effects, as explained in § 250, are utterly different from those of a proportional system. 

In Italy a list system of P. R. was adopted and used for two elections, in 1919 and 1921; but as it did not suit the purposes of dictatorship, it was abolished by Mussolini in 1924. His program required a system that would enable him to elect a majority of Parliament whether he got a majority of the votes or not. 29 P. R. still has the support of some leading Italian statesmen, and the Associazione Proporzionalista, organized in Milan in 1911, is still active under the name of Associazione per il Controllo Democratico

In Greece several parties have declared for P. R. and a P. R. bill with substantial backing had been prepared for the consideration of Parliament in 1925 before Pangalos became dictator. 

Already the people who are living under proportional list systems number more than two hundred million. 

§124. The British Movement. While the proportionalists of continental Europe were pushing their propaganda for less perfect systems with such success, proportionalists in Great Britain and other parts of the British Empire refused to be diverted from the principles of P. R with the single transferable vote. 

In 1867 John Stuart Mill spoke in favor of this system in the House of Commons. In 1872 a bill was introduced proposing it for the election of all members of the House from England and Wales in districts returning from three to sixteen members. Mill wrote in his Autobiography (published in 1875): "This great discovery, for it is no less, in the political art, inspired me, as I believe it has inspired all thoughtful persons who have adopted it, with new and more sanguine hopes respecting the prospects of human society. . . . Anyone who throws it over as a mere theoretical subtlety or crotchet, tending to no valuable purpose and unworthy of the attention of practical men, may be pronounced an incompetent statesman, unequal to the politics of the future." 

In 1884 the British Proportional Representation Society was founded. Leonard Courtney (afterwards Lord Courtney of Penwith), Sir John Lubbock (afterwards Lord Avebury), Professor John Westlake, and Albert Grey (afterwards Earl Grey) took the lead in an active educational campaign, addressing numerous meetings, conducting demonstration elections, and urging the reform on members of the Government. Their efforts, however, failed in their immediate object, and the Representation of the People Act, passed in 1884, settled the method of election for a long period. The leaders of the P. R. movement, all active men in the political life of the day, became engrossed in other affairs. The Society was never dissolved, but its committee did not meet from 1888 until 1905. 

In 1905 Leonard Courtney was induced by John H. Humphreys to address a meeting on P. R. in a suburb of London. After it he convened the surviving members of the old committee with some of the new friends of the reform. The first public meeting of the revived Society was held in London on May 4th. From that time Mr. Courtney (after 1906 Lord Courtney of Penwith) gave the cause his continuous and active support. Until his death in 1918 he was the most inspiring and influential voice in the British movement. Others who have served the cause long and well are the late Earl Grey, Lord Avebury, Lady Courtney, Aneurin Williams, Sir John Fischer Williams, Major Sir A. Clive Morrison-Bell, Lord Parmoor, C. P. Scott, Capt. A. J. Gray, and Miss Elsie Morton. 

But the man above all others who has made this recent British movement possible is Mr. Humphreys. For several years after 1905 he served the British Society as Honorary Secretary. Since 1912 he has served it as secretary on a fulltime basis. His book, Proportional Representation, to which we have frequently referred—now unfortunately out of print—has been the leading authority on the subject since it appeared in 1911. Under his leadership the British Society has exerted a powerful influence throughout the world, notably in South Africa, Australia and Tasmania, New Zealand, Canada, Ireland, and the United States. It has been the most potent single factor in the recent remarkable advance of P. R. with the single transferable vote.  

Of the early champions of that form of P. R. outside of Great Britain, Catherine Helen Spence of Adelaide, South Australia, deserves special mention. She worked for the cause from 1860 until her death in 1910. It was in large measure due to her educational work that Tasmania, first among English-speaking communities, adopted the single transferable vote for important public elections in 1896. 

The experience of Tasmania, and that of the many other communities which have since followed her example in adopting P. R. in its best form, are described in the next chapter. P. R. is now used for important public elections in Great Britain and every one of her greater self-governing dominions. 30 In every case the form used is the single transferable vote, which British proportionalists have done so much to perfect and promote.


§ 125. The First Minority Systems. The earliest plea for either minority or proportional representation in this country which we have been able to discover was that of Thomas Earle in the Constitutional Convention of Pennsylvania in 1837. On that occasion Earle advocated the limited vote for the choice of election inspectors in each voting precinct. Though the proposal was rejected by the Convention, it was adopted by the legislature on July 2, 1839. The Act, which provides that each voter shall vote for only one inspector, though two are elected together, 31 is still in effect throughout the state. It is to be noted that this use of the limited vote, though contemporary with Rowland Hill's introduction of the proportional principle in Adelaide, was incomparably less important. So far as the principle as distinguished from the method of proportional representation goes, the Adelaide experiment was complete and excellent. The Pennsylvania act, on the other hand, aimed only at minority, not proportional, representation, and applied only to administrative officers, not to the members of a deliberative body. 

Gilpin's pamphlet of 1844 32 though worthy of being the source of a great movement, failed, as we have seen, to have any practical effects. We have not seen it noticed in any publication prior to 1866, when the system which it set forth was advocated for the election of municipal councils by J. Francis Fisher of Philadelphia, son of a first cousin of Gilpin's, in a pamphlet entitled Reform in our Municipal Elections. 

The second treatise on P. R. printed in America was J. Francis Fisher's The Degradation of our Representative System and its Reform, Philadelphia, 1863. It was written after Fisher had read Mill's Considerations on Representative Government,33 in which Hare's system is explained and praised. 

It advocated a plan on the lines of Gergonne's proposal and the Adelaide experiment, worked out in a somewhat more practical way. 

§ 126. The First P. R. Movement in the United States. The first real movement in this country for minority and proportional representation began about 1865 under the stimulus of the writings of Hare and Mill. In 1865 Simon Sterne of New York visited England, where he made the acquaintance of Hare, Mill, and other leading English proportionalists, returning to lead an active P. R. movement in his own state. In 1866 appeared Fisher's pamphlet advocating Gilpin's list system for cities. 

About the same time, too, Charles R. Buckalew, United States Senator from Pennsylvania from 1863 till 1869, began to work for minority representation with great zeal and ability. Of all the election reform advocates of that time in the country he was by far the most successful in securing legislation. He was the prime mover for the passage by the Pennsylvania legislature of the Act of April 10, 1867, which extended the limited vote, already applied to inspectors of election in the state, to jury commissioners. It was as a result of suggestions made by him to Mr. Medill of the Chicago Tribune in 1869, before the meeting of the Illinois Constitutional Convention in December of that year, that Mr. Medill took the lead in securing the adoption by the Convention of cumulative voting in three-member districts for the election of representatives in the state legislature. In 1870 he secured the passage by the Pennsylvania legislature of an act applying cumulative voting to the councilmen and certain other officials of his home town, Bloomsburg; and by June, 1871, he had had the provisions of the Bloomsburg Act extended, first to cover the election of councilmen, directors of the poor, and school directors in certain other specified places, and then, by the act of June 2, 1871, to boroughs generally throughout the state. 34 

In a number of able speeches, notably in the Senate on July 11, 1867, at a large public meeting in Philadelphia in November of the same year, before the Social Science Association at Philadelphia in October 1870, and in the Senate of Pennsylvania on March 27, 1871, as well as in the report 35 of the Select Committee on Representative Reform of the United States Senate, of which be was chairman, Mr. Buckalew explained the limited vote and cumulative voting and argued persuasively for the use of the latter in the election of representatives in Congress, state legislatures, town councils, and other bodies. 

Though familiar with the writings of Hare and of Hare's admirer, Mill, Senator Buckalew did not support the Hare system of proportional representation, regarding it as too complicated. 

It was cumulative voting, just as we have described it in Chapter IV, that Senator Buckalew advocated, but he did not call it by that name. Apparently to emphasize the voter's privilege of either cumulating his vote or not as he pleased, Senator Buckalew preferred the name "free voting." How little the system really deserves that name has been explained in Chapter IV. 

From 1865 until his death in 1901 Simon Sterne championed proportional representation strongly in New York. With David Dudley Field and others he organized the Personal Representation Society of New York. Though this organization also was formed under the inspiration of Hare and Mill, the system which it advocated for the New York legislature when it presented a "memorial" and a "report" to the Constitutional Convention of the state in 1867 was not the Hare but the proxy 36 system. Sterne's book, On Representative Government and Personal Representation, 37 though originally planned as a simplified American edition of Hare's volume, developed into an explanation of the list system as well as of the Hare, with more praise for the former than for the latter. Indeed, for nearly half a century after 1865, when the American movement began, the Hare system failed to command the general support of American proportionalists. The general feeling among them was probably that expressed by Salem Dutcher in his Minority or Proportional Representation. 38 "Except in these tentative elections," 39 Dutcher wrote, "the preferential vote [the Hare system] has not been brought into use in the United States, nor does it seem likely that the nicety of the system will permit its adoption. In itself it insures a just representation, but in practical operation would probably be made the occasion of great dissatisfaction, unfairness, and fraud." But there has been no time since 1870 when the Hare system did not have in this country at least one able champion. 

For several years beginning in 1866 election reform was popular in progressive circles in this country. It was taken up by some of the leading newspapers, including the New York World and Tribune, the Chicago Republican, Times, and Tribune, the Cincinnati Enquirer, and the St. Louis Republican. When Simon Sterne lectured in February, 1869, at Cooper Union on "Representative Government, its Evils and their Reform," his audience numbered about fifteen hundred persons. 

The only minority systems adopted for any of our public elections at this time, namely, cumulative voting in small districts and the limited vote, failed, as it is now clear they were bound to fail, to result in all the benefits fondly predicted for them by the leaders of the movement. And the result, naturally, was a slump in the enthusiasm for the principle of true representation itself. In 1886 the New York Nation commented on the decline of interest in "personal," "proportional," or "minority representation"; and it added: "The chief reason for the loss of interest in it was undoubtedly the want of any thoroughly satisfactory scheme of personal representation." 

For the details of this abortive early movement of 1866-1872 the reader is referred to Dutcher’s book already cited. 

§ 127. First Applications of the Hare System. In April, 1870, the Hare system of proportional representation was used by the Alumni of Harvard for the nomination of Overseers of the College. This was the first test of the system in an election of importance in America, or, so far as we know, anywhere except in Denmark. The leader in securing the adoption of the system for this purpose and in conducting the elections was William R. Ware, an alumnus of Harvard and a professor in the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. The use of the system was continued by the Harvard Alumni for the elections of 1871 and 1872, but was then given up. Another contribution to the movement by Professor Ware was an anonymous article on proportional representation-by far the most important one printed in any American periodical up to that time - in the American Law Review for January, 1872. 

From 1867, when he heard Senator Buckalew's Philadelphia address on proportional representation, until his death in 1902 Alfred Cridge worked for the reform indefatigably. He favored the Hare system and got the Mechanics Institute of San Francisco, where he spent the latter part of his life, to adopt it. He maintained a wide correspondence with proportionalists at home and abroad. 

From 1872 until 1893 the record of the movement in this country is scanty. The Personal Representation Society of New York was active only occasionally. The society which had existed in Chicago in 1872, according to Salem Dutcher, became inactive also. There was no national organization. 

§ 128. Early Days of the American P. R. League, 1893-1913. On August 11 and 12, 1893, there met in Chicago in connection with the World's Fair a "Proportional Representation Congress." Papers were read by Miss Catherine Helen Spence, of Australia, who happened to be in the country on a P. R. lecture tour at that time, Professor John R. Commons, W.D. McCracken, William H. Gove, Alfred Cridge, and others. A permanent organization was formed, the American Proportional Representation League, with William Dudley Foulke as president and Stoughton Cooley as secretary. An effort was made to agree on one system, but that was found to be impossible. It was finally decided to advocate for Congress either the schedule system 40 then called in America the "Gove system," or the list system as used in parts of Switzerland, then called in America the "free list system." A "free list" bill sanctioned by the League was introduced in the House of Representatives, 52nd Congress, by Tom L. Johnson of Ohio, whose influence on the city of Cleveland through his famous reform administration as mayor was a factor in that city's adoption of P. R. years afterward. 

At the outset of its career the League issued an excellent little quarterly edited by Mr. Cooley, the Proportional Representation Review. It contained articles not only by leading American proportionalists, including William Dudley Foulke, John R. Commons, Charles Francis Adams, and Simon Sterne, but by such eminent foreigners as Sir John Lubbock (afterward Lord Avebury), Leonard Courtney (afterward Lord Courtney of Penwith), and Ernest Naville of Geneva. At the end of three years the energy of the organization was somewhat spent. The members were not yet united on a single system of voting. It became hard to raise the funds required to continue the quarterly. The League therefore became less active, and publication of the quarterly was suspended. 

At the so-called "First Social and Political Conference," held at Buffalo in the summer of 1899 under the leadership of Eltweed Pomeroy and other Progressives, and at the "Second Social and Political Conference," held at Detroit in the summer of 1901, proportional representation received a good deal of attention and elections under the Hare system were conducted by Robert Tyson of Toronto. These demonstrations made a number of converts to the Hare system and revealed Mr. Tyson as an able and devoted leader of the movement. From 1901 until 1913 the Proportional Representation Review, supported by a few dozen faithful members of the League and published as a department of one periodical after another, was edited by Mr. Tyson, who served also during most of that time as secretary of the League, which had had Canadians in its membership from its foundation. Through nearly all those years Mr. Tyson, though a man of very small means, gave his services to the cause, like his predecessor, Mr. Cooley, without compensation. 

For some two years, 1909-1911, William Hoag of Boston, a former member of the Massachusetts legislature, served as secretary on the same basis. Mr. Hoag, like Mr. Tyson, favored the Hare system. He initiated the policy, which the League has followed since, of concentrating its efforts on the adoption of P. R. for city councils so as to get actual demonstrations of its merits, if only on a small scale. 

In 1912 one of the authors of this book, C. G. Hoag, became secretary and treasurer of the League for the United States, Mr. Tyson retaining those offices for Canada. In 1913 Mr. Hoag took over from Mr. Tyson, whose strength was failing, the editorship of the Review. The next year Mr. Tyson retired as secretary-treasurer for Canada, and in 1917 he died, honored and loved by all who knew him. 

§ 129. The Oregon Campaign. From 1908 until 1914 a group of proportionalists in Oregon, led by William S. U'Ren, carried on a vigorous movement for the adoption of P. R. for the Oregon legislature. In 1908 they secured, by means of the "Initiative," an amendment to the State Constitution prescribing that "provisions may be made by law for elections by equal proportional representation of all the voters for every office which is filled by the election of two or more persons whose official duties, rights, and powers are equal and concurrent." 

In their efforts, however, to pass measures prescribing P. R. for the legislature they were not so successful. In 1908 a novel plan of P. R., which they worked out in connection with single-member districts, was defeated in the legislature. In 1910 the same plan, submitted to the whole electorate under the provisions of the Initiative, was defeated at the polls. Later two other P. R. plans for the legislature, submitted under the Initiative by the same indefatigable group, were also defeated, the proxy plan in 1912 and the single non-transferable vote in 1914. 

Though the defeat of these courageous attempts to introduce P. R. on a state-wide scale was hard for the devoted workers there, it was not, perhaps, without its compensations for the cause in this country. For none of the three plans proposed in Oregon could, in our firm opinion, have given completely satisfactory results; and any weaknesses in a P. R. plan adopted for such important and conspicuous elections would probably have been an obstacle to the use by other American communities of any proportional plan whatever. Physiologically, half a loaf is better than no bread; politically, not always. The use of cumulative voting in Illinois since 1870, for example, has probably not helped the cause of true representation. So the single non-transferable vote, if it had been adopted by Oregon in 1914, might have retarded rather than hastened the progress of the country towards the general use of election methods not only arithmetically fair but also dependably beneficial in their reactions upon candidates, parties, and voters. We are glad that in this country, as throughout the rest of the English-speaking world, the name proportional representation means to the general public only one thing, namely the system of proportional representation which gets rid of the great unseen errors in representation as well as those that are seen in the returns. 

§ 130. The P. R. Society of Canada. In the winter of 1915 arrangements were made by the officers of the Forum of Ottawa, several of whom were convinced proportionalists, to have C. G. Hoag address that body on P. R. in March. For some days before the meeting these Ottawa leaders did everything they could to arouse public interest in the subject. In particular they carried out, with the cooperation of the newspapers, a large illustrative P. R. election. The result was an audience of perhaps eight hundred people for the speaker at the Forum and the rousing of sufficient interest to warrant the founding of a Canadian P. R. Society. Less than a year later, in January, 1916, Mr. Humphreys on his return to England from Tasmania gave a great impetus to the movement in Canada by speaking before many audiences from British Columbia to Montreal

The first secretaries (honorary) of the Society, Howard S. Ross and Daniel G. Whittle, were able to serve only a short time. The volunteer who took their place in February, 1916, Ronald Hooper, then a civil servant in Ottawa, soon became the Humphreys of the Dominion. Under his guidance city after city of western Canada, including Winnipeg, Calgary, Edmonton, Regina, and Saskatoon, adopted proportional representation and carried through satisfactorily their elections under the new system. Two provinces also, Manitoba and Alberta, have adopted P. R. for parts of their legislatures. Canada's experience with the system will be described in the next chapter. Since Mr. Hooper's removal from Ottawa to Winnipeg and his enforced retirement from the honorary secretaryship on account of the pressure of his duties as an editor of the Winnipeg Tribune, the movement in Canada has missed him greatly. 

Proportional representation has not been tried in any of the eastern provinces of Canada, though it was endorsed in principle by a plebiscite in Ottawa in 1916, recommended for Montreal by a Charter Commission in 1921, and proposed for provincial elections in Toronto and other selected constituencies by the United Farmers Government of Ontario in 1923. 

P. R. continues, however, in Canada to be a leading question of the day, occupying a place in the public eye that still seems remote in this country. On February 19, 1923, a bill ably sponsored by W. C. Good, member for Brant, Ontario, to use P. R. experimentally in selected constituencies for the next elections of the Dominion Parliament, came near passing the House of Commons, being defeated by the close vote of 90 to 72. It was supported by the Progressive party and by many Liberals, including Prime Minister W. L. Mackenzie King. On the same occasion the House adopted a resolution for the general application of the alternative vote—the single transferable vote applied as a majority system in single-member districts—which is regarded by many Canadian proportionalists as a stepping stone to the adoption of P. R . 41 Referring to a similar action taken in 1924 by the Manitoba legislature for its members outside of Winnipeg, 42 the Winnipeg Tribune said editorially: "Advocates of electoral reform should not expect too much from the bill. It is admittedly only a step in the right direction. . . . That it will ultimately lead to the general adoption of proportional representation few will doubt." 

§ 131. The Single Transferable Vote in American Cities. By the time C. G. Hoag assumed the secretaryship of the American P. R. League in 1912, P. R. with the single transferable vote had clearly gained the ascendancy in the English-speaking world over other proportional systems, having been adopted for important public elections in two of the British dominions, Australia and South Africa, whereas the list system used in some countries of Continental Europe had not been tried in any English-speaking country. P. R. with the single transferable vote was advocated, too, in the authoritative publications of the British P. R. Society. It had been preferred by the recent secretaries of the American P. R. League, Robert Tyson and William Hoag, and it was preferred, for the reasons given in this book, by the new secretary. Naturally, therefore, as he was free under the new constitution of the League, adopted in 1913, to recommend any system of P. R. that seemed to him best for the purpose in view, he decided to recommend only the Hare system for all purposes for which it seemed at all practicable. This policy has been adhered to ever since, and it has been objected to by only some four or five members of the organization. No list system of P. R. has been adopted for public elections in any English-speaking community. 

As Mr. Hoag was able for some years to give the cause his entire time, the membership and the income of the League grew and the P. R. Review was published again—from October, 1914, independently of any other periodical. 

A favorable opportunity for the trial of proportional representation in some American city was presented at this time by the granting of "home rule"—that is, the right to adopt and amend their own charters—to the cities of several states and by the spread of the "city manager plan" of government. The city manager plan differs from the old plan of government generally used in the United States in that the chief administrator is selected by the representative body, that is, the council or "commission," instead of being elected at the polls, that he is supposed to be selected solely on the ground of fitness for his administrative duties, and that he can be replaced by the representative body at its pleasure. The plan therefore gives to the representative body complete responsibility for the administration of the city's business as well as for its legislation. In the cities which had thus far adopted the plan the council to which so much power was given had been elected at large by the block vote or general ticket, 43 which made it possible for the one largest party or group in the city to elect all the members. For such a purpose the block vote was sure to be unsatisfactory and proportional representation was sure to be appreciated by thoughtful citizens. 

The first of our cities to give proportional representation real consideration was Ashtabula, Ohio. The reason that it was the first was merely that the secretary of the League, when on his way to Cleveland in 1912 with a day to spare on his hands, asked for a ticket to the last city of some size between New York and Cleveland. As the ticket handed to him read to Ashtabula, he got off at the station of that name, found the town, persuaded one man to bring together seven others to hear about proportional representation that evening, and was fortunate enough to convince the little group that proportional representation should be seriously considered by the city if it revised its charter. 

Later the secretary addressed the Ashtabula Chamber of Commerce, and finally he addressed the official Charter Commission elected to revise the city's government. The commission voted to incorporate P. R. in the charter which it was preparing to submit to the voters. Afterwards, however, it changed its mind, fearing that a charter which contained two such novelties as the city manager plan, which the commission desired, and proportional representation would not secure popular approval. The charter was submitted to the people without P. R. in November, 1914, and adopted in that form. In August, 1915, however, before the first election was carried out under the new charter, a special election was held to vote on an amendment prescribing the Hare system of P. R. for the election of the council. The amendment was carried by a vote of 588 to 400. The petition to call the special election and the favorable vote were both due to W. E. Boynton, labor leader and former president of the City Council, a man who commanded the respect of all classes. Mr. Boynton was one of the little group who had heard the secretary's first message in 1912. He had grasped the importance of P. R. at once and had furnished the local leadership necessary to bring the campaign to a successful conclusion. 

The record of Ashtabula's experience with P. R. and that of the other American cities which have since followed her example—first Boulder, Kalamazoo, Sacramento, and West Hartford, and later Cleveland and Cincinnati—will be found in the next chapter. 

In 1923 P. R. was recommended by an official charter commission for the Board of Aldermen of New York City. 

For the progress of the cause in this country since 1917 much credit is due to Walter J. Millard, who in that year joined the staff of the P. R. League as Field Secretary. Mr. Millard has toured the country from Maine to California. From all parts of the country and all classes of society has come back testimony to his resourcefulness and effective eloquence. At the time this book is published the other regular members of the League's staff—in addition to Mr. Hoag and Mr. Millard -are Miss Elsie S. Parker, bookkeeper, stenographer, and office secretary, who has rendered indispensable service in the League's office since 1917, and George H. Hallett, Jr., one of the authors of this book, who became Assistant Secretary of the League in 1919 and Executive Secretary in 1926. Mr. Hallett succeeded Albert B. Maris, who had served ably as Assistant Secretary for a little more than a year. 

Though proportional representation is still a new thing in the United States and has doubtless not yet affected the cities where it is used as much as it will in time, it has already passed the stage of experiment. The successful election of November, 1923, in Cleveland and those of November, 1925, in both Cleveland and Cincinnati have proved conclusively, we believe, that P. R. with the single transferable vote is a practicable and beneficial system of election under any circumstances to which it is likely to be subjected. It can no longer be declared, by sincere men who have looked into the facts, "too complicated" for American voters. The fear that great numbers of ballots cannot be counted in a reasonable time and without suspicion of "juggling" may be dismissed. 44 And the reliability of the system, as soon as it is fully understood, to elect the most representative group that could be chosen from the candidates offered, and to bring out as candidates, regardless of what any party may do, more of the persons really wanted, must be conceded. After such demonstrations as those in Cleveland and Cincinnati opposition to proportional representation in this country may fairly be attributed in most cases either to misunderstanding of its effects or to opposition to the principles of republican government. 

We seem appreciably nearer, therefore, to the realization of the prophecy made by Dr. Hatton of Cleveland after watching the first P. R. election in the little city of Ashtabula in 1915: "It is possible that Ashtabula has started a movement which will ultimately lead to the reform of the present demoralizing method of choosing the members of state legislatures and of the lower house of Congress."


1 Historical information is scattered through most of the other chapters. It may be found by referring to the heading "History of P. R." in the index. 

2 This translation is given on pages 50 and 51 of Simon Sterne's book On Representative Government and Personal Representation, Philadelphia, 1871. Sterne says that the speech was given before the French Constituent Assembly. If so, the date he gives is incorrect, for the Constituent Assembly was not yet in existence at that time. Whatever he may have said there later, we know that he said substantially what we have quoted in the Assembly of Provence on the date given (see Œuvres de Mirabeau, Paris, 1834, page 7). 

Mirabeau's statement (taken from Sterne) and Condorcet's and Saint-Just's proposals mentioned below are listed in Ernest Naville's valuable chronological summary entitled Les Progrès de la Representation Proportionelle, Brussels, 1885. 

3 See § 45. 

4 Volume X, pages 281-288. 

5 À l’époque des élections les électeurs se grouperaient spontanément, suivant la nature de leurs opinions, de leurs intérêts, ou de leurs voeux ... et sera ... député d'un département à la chambre élective tout citoyen qui ... sera porteur d'un mandat de deux cents électeurs." For the information in regard to Gergonne, we are indebted to the book by Poul Andrae of Copenhagen, son of the eminent Danish statesman referred to later in this chapter, on his father's contribution to the cause of proportional representation (Andrae og hans Opfindelse Forholdstals Valgmaaden, Copenhagen, 1905). An English translation of this book is listed in Appendix XII. 

6 Exactly the same plan as that used in Adelaide, except possibly in matters of minor detail, was brought forward independently in the same year (1839) by the ex-premier of France, de Villèle, then retired to private life. 

7 By the "elective body" is meant, evidently, the body of voters. 

8 Catherine Helen Spence, Autobiography, Chapter III, Adelaide, 1910, p. 17. 

9 Apparently 18 happened to be the number voted for by majority vote in the first election because the total number to be elected was 20 and the number elected by unanimous quota was 2. 

10 It would be more correct to say that this was the first representation (in a public body) by unanimous quota. The single-member district system also is representation by quota (in the sense explained in § 12). 

11 Professor Ernest Naville of Geneva, "Proportional Representation in Switzerland," Proportional Representation Review, December, 1893. 

12 These figures differ widely from those given by, Robert Lytton in his report to the British Foreign Office from Copenhagen in 1863 (see §122), which have been repeated in many books on proportional representation. But Lytton's figures were incorrect, as we learn from Frederik Zeuthen of the Department of the Interior, Copenhagen, and from Poul Andrae's book cited above (see footnote 5), p. 108 ff., Meisling translation, p. 66 f. As we have been unable to reconcile the figures given by these two authorities, we think it likely that our figures in the text are not quite correct. 

13 The sections quoted will be found in Poul Andrae's book, Meisling translation, pp. 4-6. 

14 These unfortunate provisions for counting the same ballots twice under certain circumstances were not proposed by Andrae but were incorporated against his protest. This we know from a speech he delivered in the Rigsraad in 1863. reported in Poul Andrae's book already cited. Carl Andrae would have omitted the last two sentences of Section 24 and all of Section 25. 

15See the discussions of the quota in Appendix VI (1). 

16 Andrae's comment on the article in notes found by his son and biographer, was as follows: "I am surprised to find developed in an article by Gergonne the same idea of carrying out elections of representative bodies that I thought I made use of myself for the first time in the October Electoral Law. Gergonne demands that anybody who can manifestly show that he is supported by the votes of a certain number (200) of legitimate voters, shall be recognized as representative or member." P. Andrae, work cited, Meisling translation, p. 29. 

17 For a brief account of Denmark's experience with the system see §165. 

18 P. Andrae, work cited, p. 177 f., Meisling translation, p. 109 f. 

19 Poul Andrae, work cited, p. 169, Meisling translation, p. 102. 

20 London, 1861. See the quotations from Mill in Appendix II. 

21 For an explanation of the meaning of "surplus" see § 66. 

22 In this recount it was assumed, we suppose, that the names on each ballot were written in the voter's order of preference. See Die Frage der Einführung einer Proportionalvertretung, by Hagenbach-Bischoff, Basel, 1888, p.12. 

23 "Nous avons pris pour base de notre étude les travaux de M. Hare. Notre plan est, pour le fond, celui de ce publicists." 

24 From La Question Electorale, by Ernest Naville, Geneva, 1867, p. 7. 

25 From Naville's article in the P. R. Review of September, 1895. 

26 Serbia adopted P. R. for local elections in 1888. She continued to hold her elections by P. R. when she became a part of the new kingdom of the Serbs, Croats, and Slovenes (Jugo-Slavia at the close of the war.) 

27 For Lisbon and Oporto members only. 

28 See also Appendix VII, which describes the different forms of list systems in use. 

29 See the article on Italy in the P. R. Review for April, 1925. 

30 Newfoundland and Jamaica have not yet tried P. R., though the latter has a promising P. R. movement. In 1923 a bill introduced by Major Edward T.Dixon to apply the single transferable vote to elections of the Legislative Council was defeated by the Council by a vote of 7 to 5. A "P. R. Society of Jamaica" was founded in 1920. 

31 This form of limited voting, the single non-transferable vote, was described in § 45 as a crude form of proportional representation, but of course its application in two-member districts prevents any real approach to the proportional ideal

32 See § 120 and Appendix VIII. 

33 In his pamphlet of 1863 Fisher mentioned having given thought to a scheme of proportional representation some years before he learned about Hare's writings. In an appendix to the main paper of his pamphlet of 1866, mentioned in connection with Gilpin above, he explains the matter fully and reproduces the short sketch of his scheme which he had "rather hurriedly written in Paris in the month of June, 1857," after an interesting conversation on kindred topics with M. de Tocqueville at the apartment of Mr. George Ticknor. He adds that he "was discouraged from giving it publicity by the impression that it would be listened to by none of our political leaders and would excite little interest in our public. It was only after the publication of Mr. Hare's book, in 1861, which was not seen by the writer for more than a year afterwards, that he determined to put in print his own scheme of voting, so different, yet supported on the same principles." As Fisher was a man of the highest character and standing, the truthfulness of this account is not to be questioned. We may therefore be sure that Fisher committed a plan of proportional representation to writing in the same year that Hare wrote his first pamphlet and long before Hare's ideas on proportional representation had reached America. 

34 These provisions for cumulative voting in Pennsylvania have since been repealed, but the principle survives in the provision of the present State Constitution (adopted in 1873) which makes cumulative voting mandatory for private corporations. 

35 Of March 2, 1869. 

36 Explained in § 50. 

37 Philadelphia, 1871. 

38 N. Y., 1872, p. 136. 

39 Certain elections of private organizations. 

40 See § 48 

41 However, this resolution has not yet (January, 1926) been given effect. 

42 The Winnipeg members are elected by P. R. Both Manitoba and Alberta now use the alternative vote for all members of their legislatures not elected by P. R. 

43 These terms are explained in Chapter 3. 

44 We do not mean to imply, of course, that election officials could not drag out the count or prevent adequate supervision, as they could under any other system, if they were so inclined. In fact the second P. R. count in Cleveland was not well supervised, though it was efficient, and the first P. R. count in Cincinnati was not as efficient as it might have been, though it was very well supervised. 


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