Borda Count

A rarely used points based electoral system.

Borda Count

Voters use the Borda Count elect one Member of Parliament (MP) per constituency. On polling day, voters put a number next to each candidate, with their favourite at number one. The rankings are then turned into points.

Candidates ranked last score one point, two for being next-to-last and so on. The counters add up all the points each candidate receives and the one with the most points is the winner.

Eurovision uses a variation of this system.

The Borda Count tends to elect broadly acceptable candidates, rather than those supported by the majority.

It also encourages a strategic approach by parties to nominations. Adding extra candidates increases the number of points available in the election. While your last candidate will always get one point, your first will get as many points as there are candidates. This alters the gap between the candidates. A minority faction, by standing more candidates, can prevail over a majority.

It can also be hard for voters as the points you have to give to your least favourite candidate can be the ones that end up beating your first choice.