What is Hare-Clark and how does it work?
Hare-Clark is named after the system's creators and implementors: Thomas Hare and Andrew Inglis Clark. Hare-Clark is essentially a proportional election system in which candidates from all parties run in a single election for a constituency, and voters elect their members using a preferrential ballot in which they rank the candidates from their most-desired to win election as #1 to a certain number of preferences for their vote to count (or even all candidates, with their least-preferred candidate recieving the highest numeric number). Candidates who score a quota (threshold for election) are elected immediately (and their surplus votes distributed). Once no candidate has a quota, the lowest candidate is eliminated and their votes transferred the voter's next preference until another candidate gains a quota. The process repeats until all seats are filled.
In the case of a mid-term resignation, a "countback" is performed by excluding the resigning member and redistributing votes until another candidate gains the quota the resigning member had.
Without going into the numerial mechanisms of Hare-Clark, in Tasmania there are five electoral divisions, and thus five elections, each one needing to fill five vacancies for their divisions. To win, a candidate needs to win 16.7% (one sixth) of all votes cast to gain a quota and thus be elected. For example, if Labor candidates gain two quotas, Liberal candidates gain two quotas, Greens a half quota and minor parties a half quota, Labor and Liberal will have two seats, and the minor parties would be eliminated to determine the fifth and final seat. For simplicity's sake, the Greens earn the fifth and final seat.
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