The geometry of voting power : weighted voting and hyper-ellipsoids
In cases where legislators represent districts that vary in population, the design of fair legislative voting rules requires an understanding of how the number of votes cast by a legislator is related to a measure of her influence over collective decisions. We provide three new characterizations of weighted voting, each based on the intuition that winning coalitions should be close to one another. The locally minimal and tightly packed characterizations use a weighted Hamming metric. Ellipsoidal separability employs the Euclidean metric : a separating hyperellipsoid contains all winning coalitions, and omits losing ones. The ellipsoid's proportions, and the Hamming weights, reflect the ratio of voting weight to influence, measured as Penrose-Banzhaf voting power. In particular, the spherically separable rules are those for which voting powers can serve as voting weights.
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