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Different ways of electing a leader-Pros and Cons.

Windowshopper

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The spate of leadership elections both in the UK and US, and the questions about the viability of Enda Kenny's leadership of FG got me thinking about the different ways parties can elect political leaders,and it made think what is the best way to elect a leader?

In my eyes the following are the different ways a leader can be elected. Which one do you think is best. I am not a political scientist so these are not official categories and mixtures of various types exist.

1) The informal approach. This was the practice of the Tory party up until the election of Heath. There wasn't a leadership election. Instead a leader would emerge after discussion between party big wigs. Advantages: the person selected would be broadly acceptable to all wings of the party and would be of proven political experience. Likewise the fact that he/she was seen as agreeable might demonstrate that he would be able to handle the various personalities in the party. Disadvantages:Such a candidate could be selected because he/she was a malleable individual who can be manipulated by the grandees. The lack of a leadership election could mean that no real stock is taking of the party's position, and a risk of stagnation might occur.


2) Parliamentary party election. The leader of the party is elected by elected members of the party.Advantages: The leader commands the confidence of his/her MPs. Disadvantage: the normal party members voice is excluded.

3) Electoral college. Various interest groups have different weighing of votes for example members, MPs, and affiliated societies. This is more common in social democratic parties which grew out of and see themselves as the parliamentary arm of the Labour movement. Advantages: can achieve a balance between different viewpoints on party legitimacy. Disadvantages: undemocratic as some voices are privileged over others.

4) Closed Primary. The leader is elected by party members and sometimes by affiliated members. Advantages: leadership reflects the wishes of party members who do the most work for the party. Disadvantages: leadership reflects the wishes of the party members who tend to be more ideological than the general public. This tenancy can be exasperated via entryism (guess where I stand re. Corbyn?).

5) Open Primary. The leader is elected by an open vote of the public. Advantages: the most popular candidate with the general public is elected. Disadvantage: general public might not be interested. Could open up party to influence of political extremes or organised interest groups.

Which of these models or mix of models do you think is the best? Do you have an alternative models?

I think these models opens up questions of what constitutes legitimacy in party leadership. Does a party leader get legitimacy from ordinary party members or are public representatives who are aware of the general mood outside their parties best positioned to choose an electable leader?
 


Round tower

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The American one is who has the most Dosh or can gather the most dosh, the cost of the the US presidential race is mad, i heard that HC hosted a presidential fundraising dinner, to attend it cost 38,000 dollars a head. Once a President takes office his job is to start raising funds for the next campaign.
Then with the UK Labour rules where the members has a vote where Corbyn was elected leader but the majority of the Lab, MP's did not want him as leader.
 

Fellow

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In Ireland and UK I would prefer election by party representatives who are members of the Lower House. They have been elected by universal franchise. I don't favour a role for others like party members. You have some very artificial systems like FG's. I think these are fairly new systems and traditionally the involvement of party members would be more the practice of parties like SF whose commitment to parliamentary democracy could be seen (in the past) as somewhat qualified.

Election of the leader by TDs/MPs/MLAs places emphasis on parliamentary democracy rather than the party organisation. It also obviates the situation that is arising with Corbyn and would have arisen if Leadsom had been elected by the Tories.
 

wombat

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Anyone who has attended a constituency convention will know that most who attend are not seen again during the election campaign. Party members tend to be blinkered and vote according to their prejudice rather than who is most attractive to the general electorate. Overall I think it would be better to confine selecting the leader to TDs.
 

Windowshopper

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In Ireland and UK I would prefer election by party representatives who are members of the Lower House. They have been elected by universal franchise. I don't favour a role for others like party members. You have some very artificial systems like FG's. I think these are fairly new systems and traditionally the involvement of party members would be more the practice of parties like SF whose commitment to parliamentary democracy could be seen (in the past) as somewhat qualified.

Election of the leader by TDs/MPs/MLAs places emphasis on parliamentary democracy rather than the party organisation. It also obviates the situation that is arising with Corbyn and would have arisen if Leadsom had been elected by the Tories.
Anyone who has attended a constituency convention will know that most who attend are not seen again during the election campaign. Party members tend to be blinkered and vote according to their prejudice rather than who is most attractive to the general electorate. Overall I think it would be better to confine selecting the leader to TDs.

I would agree to an extent but their is also the danger that the elected TDs would pursue policies which were popular in their area but not necessarily in the area where they haven't yet being elected, and this may actually inhibit their growth.
 

Round tower

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In Ireland and UK I would prefer election by party representatives who are members of the Lower House. They have been elected by universal franchise. I don't favour a role for others like party members. You have some very artificial systems like FG's. I think these are fairly new systems and traditionally the involvement of party members would be more the practice of parties like SF whose commitment to parliamentary democracy could be seen (in the past) as somewhat qualified.

Election of the leader by TDs/MPs/MLAs places emphasis on parliamentary democracy rather than the party organisation. It also obviates the situation that is arising with Corbyn and would have arisen if Leadsom had been elected by the Tories.
Don't know what point u are making, in FG the members of the parliamentary party elects our leader, TD's, Senators and MEPs, the elected members. In SF does anyone remember how they elect the leader as GA is the leader since 83
 

Windowshopper

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Don't know what point u are making, in FG the members of the parliamentary party elects our leader, TD's, Senators and MEPs, the elected members. In SF does anyone remember how they elect the leader as GA is the leader since 83
I think he has run unopposed since 1983 at every Ard Fheis, hence the comment at post #2.
 

Congalltee

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Only TDs should elect a party leader who can become Taoiseach. It doesn't matter for smaller parties, but it's probably good practice. Members, however, should be allowed to pick the TDs, subject to ratification of a national elected executive.

It's the height of arrogance that paying a membership fee should entitled someone to decide a party leader. Thankfully, it doesn't really happen often. And Corybyn's is an example of when the MPs are so disconnected from members thAt they have no confidence in their "leader". A daft model.
 

Fellow

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Don't know what point u are making, in FG the members of the parliamentary party elects our leader, TD's, Senators and MEPs, the elected members. In SF does anyone remember how they elect the leader as GA is the leader since 83
As regards FG, apologies if I'm wrong but there was an article in the IT on 9 July saying some FG TDs were exploring changing the leader election procedure to make it shorter in case a general election was called. It mentioned the current procedure taking 20 days and involving hustings and councillors. I can't seem to post the link to this.
 

GDPR

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The spate of leadership elections both in the UK and US, and the questions about the viability of Enda Kenny's leadership of FG got me thinking about the different ways parties can elect political leaders,and it made think what is the best way to elect a leader?
Put each candidate in a barrel, roll them down a steep hill into a wall at the bottom, open the barrels, any that haven't already burst open by themselves and if any candidate is found to have slipped out and replaced himself/herself with someone else before the roll, elect them on the spot.

If no success, call for more candidates.
 

Poblacht-Nua

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I believe that the best approach would be the way of an open vote. This would allow the people to directly elect a leader of their choosing. It would guarantee each person casting a ballot for their preferred candidate is treated equally and has no upper hand over another individual due to their status, party position, etc.

My ideal would be modelled somewhat on the American primary elections wherein party loyalists choose their candidate for president. But unlike in the States I wouldn't be in favour of an electoral college platform, but more of a direct route where every vote is equal and the first candidate to reach a majority of votes wins.

Ireland is in serious need of an extreme overhaul in political reform. The way in we elect politicians must also be reformed, not just how party leaders are elected.
 

between the bridges

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Open Primary is the best way to elect a leader, government is made for the people. So its people right to decide who is best for them.
katie if yer 12 yer too auld for this place...
 

tipofdiceberg

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Don't know what point u are making, in FG the members of the parliamentary party elects our leader, TD's, Senators and MEPs, the elected members. In SF does anyone remember how they elect the leader as GA is the leader since 83
The Leader is elected by Party Members. An elected panel of 12(6male, 6female) are offered up to choose from at the annual Ardfheis. None of the Leadership panel has put their name forward since 1983 although there is now talk of testing the will for a change, by the new young generation of Party Members
 

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