Women in New York City’s ranked-choice City Council

New Yorkers elected their City Council under the single transferable vote (STV), 1937-45. Council voted in June 1945 to extend its own term from two to four years. The next STV election would have been in 1949, but the system was repealed by referendum in November 1947.

Cynthia Terrell asks, “Can you tell me what the highest number of women elected at the same time was under PR in NYC? And what year?” The answer is three, in 1941. Here is a list of all women who served.

November 1937
Genevieve Earle (Fusion, Minority Leader on death of Baruch Charney Vladeck)

November 1939
• Genevieve Earle (Fusion and Citizens’ Non-Partisan, Minority Leader)

November 1941
Rita Casey (Democratic)
• Genevieve Earle (Fusion and Citizens’ Non-Partisan, Minority Leader)
Gertrude Weil Klein (American Labor)

November 1943
• Genevieve Earle (Republican and Citizens’ Non-Partisan, Minority Leader)
• Gertrude Weil Klein (American Labor)

November 1945
• Genevieve Earle (Republican and Citizens’ Non-Partisan, Minority Leader)
Mae V. Gallis (Democratic, appointed to serve in place of James A. Phillips, pending special election in November 1947)*
Bertha Schwartz (Democratic)

Source for featured image: NYC Campaign Finance Board.

Getting it done

PR would take a bipartisan deal.

It is now clear that important thinkers have endorsed the idea of proportional representation. One even accepts the possibility of a multi-party chamber.

No doubt, some of this support is due to the fact that Democrats may need proportional voting. Their votes are now so geographically concentrated that, even with a popular vote exceeding Obama’s 2008 performance, they may not carry the House next week. The question is how you pass PR in a party-line world. Spoiler: you probably need Republican votes and therefore to mandate low nomination barriers.

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Acknowledging those who came before

The past is not that long ago.

A card I got for graduation pictures two lost drivers asking a policeman for directions. All are dressed in 1950s clothing. The caption reads, “I took the road less traveled, and now I don’t know where the Hell I am.” An instant hit.

So, where am I? Where do I stand in the long arc of this game? Where does this project stand in relation to the discipline?

Continue reading “Acknowledging those who came before”