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Majority

Discussion in 'The OT' started by AntAltMike, Apr 2, 2013.

  1. Apr 2, 2013 #1 of 14
    AntAltMike

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    I was just listening to a news story on TV when someone referred to a majority of votes as being one half plus one.

    I have often heard that definition and disagreed with it. If three people vote and if two vote one way and one the other, don't the two votes constitute a majority? But one half of three is one and one half, and so one and one half of three plus one is two and one half.

    I looked up "majority" in Wikipedia, and the word "plus" does not appear anywhere on that page. They consistently define it as "more than half". Then I googled for "majority" and "definition" and the first dictionary reference was from Macmillian and it defined a majority as more than half, but then I went to Merriam-Webster and it said it is commonly "one more than one half". I stopped searching after that.

    I have never heard of any parliamentary governmental body that decides matter on simple majority rule that requires a majority of "one more than one half "rather than simply "more than one half". Any majority requiring more than one half is commonly called a super-majority. Does anyone know of any voting body that must have a vote total that exceeds the arithmetic fractional one half by a full, additional vote?
     
  2. Apr 2, 2013 #2 of 14
    RunnerFL

    RunnerFL Well-Known Member

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    Both definitions are correct. One half plus 1 is the same as more than half.
     
  3. Apr 2, 2013 #3 of 14
    AntAltMike

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    Two votes out of three is more than half of three but it isn't one more than half of three. It is just one half a vote more than half of three.
     
  4. Apr 2, 2013 #4 of 14
    dpeters11

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    In practice, yes, I do think majority is one more than half. It's a bit different when you are talking about something between three people. Then two is a majority, with 5 it's 3. That's a simple majority. Usually a supermajority is something like two thirds or three fifths.

    According to Roberts, ending debate immediately on an issue requires two-thirds.
     
  5. Apr 2, 2013 #5 of 14
    RunnerFL

    RunnerFL Well-Known Member

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    You can't have half a person so it's impossible to have one more than half in a situation where 3 people vote.

    A majority percentage is 51%, aka 1% more than half.
     
  6. Apr 2, 2013 #6 of 14
    Upstream

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    majority is any amount that is more than half the total (n), i.e., majority > 1/2 * n .

    If the total amount (n) is an even number and discrete, then majority is 1/2 * n + 1 .

    If the total amount (n) is an odd number and discrete, then majority is 1/2 * n + 0.5 .
     
  7. Apr 2, 2013 #7 of 14
    hilmar2k

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    So if 10,000 people vote a majority is 5100 votes, not 5001? :confused:
     
  8. Apr 2, 2013 #8 of 14
    Nick

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    No, in your example, 5,001 out of 10,000 constitutes a majority. i am concerned that, with our system of elections, some of you don't know what is a simple majority.

    It's not that hard.
     
  9. Apr 2, 2013 #9 of 14
    davring

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    Does a half wit count as one?
     
  10. 4HiMarks

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    This is almost right, except the last statement should be "(n) is an odd number".

    The definition "half plus one" assumes a large (even) number of voters.
     
  11. AntAltMike

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    It is a contemporaneous concept as well. In our public elections, it is the majority of irrevocable votes cast during the voting hours of election day, whereas when we attempt to amend our Constitution, it is the super majority cast over some interval, but the constitution does not explicitly address revocability of "votes" cast by states before the unspecified passage window has closed.
     
  12. MysteryMan

    MysteryMan Well-Known Member DBSTalk Club

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    The U.S. Census Bureau says it is possible. According to them the average family size is 3.14 people.
     
  13. longrider

    longrider Well-Known Member DBSTalk Club

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    That sounds like American Pi :)
     
  14. houskamp

    houskamp Active Member

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    who has 2.5 kids? :lol:
     

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