A T-Day Illustration.

This is not only right up my alley, but perfect for the holiday via Protect Democracy: How open are Americans to electoral system reform?

Specifically, I would note the voting simulation.

To simulate a winner-take-all election, we split respondents into single-member-districts by census region and “elected” the most popular dish in each district. Every single district voted in favor of either turkey or stuffing — a perfect emulation of the confines of our two-party system. 

In a second simulation, each district was allowed to elect any dish that reached a 5% threshold of support. This proportional representation round was undeniably more tasty — in addition to turkey and stuffing, favorites like pumpkin pie, mac and cheese, and mashed potatoes were added to the menu. 

The district-leve results are at the link, but here’s the graphical comparison.

And BTW, to my ongoing point that the only way to forward the cause of reform is education and discussion, note the following:

More at the link.

Happy T-Day!

FILED UNDER: Democracy, Political Theory, ,
Steven L. Taylor
About Steven L. Taylor
Steven L. Taylor is a Professor of Political Science and a College of Arts and Sciences Dean. His main areas of expertise include parties, elections, and the institutional design of democracies. His most recent book is the co-authored A Different Democracy: American Government in a 31-Country Perspective. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of Texas and his BA from the University of California, Irvine. He has been blogging since 2003 (originally at the now defunct Poliblog). Follow Steven on Twitter


  1. Flat Earth Luddite says:

    But where’s the turducken? And the mincemeat pie??? Sorry snark emoji is broken.

    But thanks!

  2. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Flat Earth Luddite: What are you talking about with mincemeat pie? Your daughter and wife don’t like mincemeat pie!

    What’s interesting to me is that undecideds are still a significant part of the total and that “opposed” gets a significant uptick. Assuming that the undecideds now lean opposed, we can see a view into why this change might be challenging to make. Certainly, put up to a vote the “in favors” can win, but they’ll probably need to all show up to make it convincing.

  3. Flat Earth Luddite says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker:

    Well, yeah, and I suppose half a mincemeat pie for the two of us is overkill. I’ve tried telling them it’s diced fruit, but alas …

    Otoh, right now we’re at 1 turkey, 2 kinds of taters, green beans, 2 variants of cranberries, dressing, and salad. Plus marionberry, pecan, apple and pumpkin pie. For five of us. Starvation is imminent I fear.

  4. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Flat Earth Luddite: Starvation is imminent I fear.

    No doubt.

  5. just nutha says:

    @Flat Earth Luddite: The marionberry pie is always an interesting choice to me given that your wife has always asked me NOT to bring blackberry pie because it has seeds in it.

  6. Flat Earth Luddite says:

    @just nutha:

    Oh I know… Me too.

    ETA especially since SHE bought it herself.

  7. Ken_L says:

    So proportional representation leads to unhealthier meals. As if obesity wasn’t already a huge problem! America needs Strong Leadership that will decide what Americans should eat to restore Western Values.

  8. Flat Earth Luddite says:


    The snark is strong with you, young Padawan. Use the snark wisely!