Exploring Voting Blocs Within the Irish Electorate: A Mixture Modeling Approach

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Title: Exploring Voting Blocs Within the Irish Electorate: A Mixture Modeling Approach
Authors: Gormley, Isobel ClaireMurphy, Thomas Brendan
Permanent link: http://hdl.handle.net/10197/7122
Date: Sep-2008
Online since: 2015-09-25T15:44:26Z
Abstract: Irish elections use a voting system called proportion representation by means of a single transferable vote(PR-STV). Under this system, voters express their vote by ranking some (or all) of the candidates in order of preference. Which candidates are elected is determined through a series of counts where candidates are eliminated and surplus votes are distributed.The electorate in any election forms a heterogeneous population: that is voters with different political and ideological persuasions would be expected to have different preferences for the candidates. The purpose of this article is to establish the presence of voting bloes in the Irish electorate, to characterize these blocs and to estimate their size.A mixture modeling approach is used to explore the heterogenecity of the Irish electorate and to establish the existence of clearly defined voting blocs. The voting blocs are characterized by thier voting preferences which are described using a ranking data model. In addition the care with which voters choose lower tier preferences is estimated in the model.The methodology is used to explore data from two Irish election. Data from eight opinion polls taken during the six weeks prior to the 1997 Irish presidential election are analyzed. These data reveal the evolution of the structure of the electorate during the election campaign. In addition data that record the votes from the Dublin West constituency of the 2002 Irish general election are analyzed to reveal distinct voting blocs within the electoate these blocs are characterized by party politics, candidate profile and political ideology.
Funding Details: Irish Research Council for Science, Engineering and Technology
Funding Details: National Institutes of Health (NIH)
Type of material: Journal Article
Publisher: Taylor and Francis
Journal: Journal of the American Statistical Association
Volume: 103
Issue: 483
Start page: 1014
End page: 1027
Copyright (published version): 2008 American Statistical Association
Keywords: ElectionsMixture modelsRanking dataVoting blocsMaximum-likelihoodMM algorithms
DOI: 10.1198/016214507000001049
Language: en
Status of Item: Peer reviewed
This item is made available under a Creative Commons License: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/3.0/ie/
Appears in Collections:Mathematics and Statistics Research Collection

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