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Calculating the Party List Seats--UPDATED

Updated: Nov 28, 2019

By Allen Hicken

Picture: Thai ballot papers

Source: Wikimedia Commons, link


*After some helpful feedback (thanks Naphat and Bangkok Pundit) I’ve included all parties that won votes in the calculations. Updated vote totals are for both scenarios.


In the wake of the recent elections there hasbeen a good deal of confusion over how the ECT determines the number of party votes each party receives. The following explanation is based on my reading of the Organic Act on the Election of Members of the House of Representatives, 2018, specifically Section 128. Because the law is unclear about the order of some steps I present two different scenarios. Which scenario the ECT chooses will have significant effect on the final distribution of seats in Parliament. Here are the steps, as we understand them. Each step is marked on the attached table.


Scenario 1

A. Divide the total number of valid votes by the number of seats (500) to get the quota (how many votes a party has to win to get a seat).[1]

B. Divide each party’s total votes by the quota.

C. Subtract the number of constituency seats won by each party from the total in B.

D. After calculating the party list seat eligibility we the check to see whether the total number of party list seats to be allocated is above or below 150. In this case, because the number exceeds 150 (166.8508 to be exact) the we go to step E. (If the total was below 150 there is a different procedure).

E. Multiply the number of eligible party list seats for each party by 150. (Section 128, paragraph 7)

F. Divide the result of E by 150 plus the number of seats above 150 from D. So, 175.5443 in this case. (Section 128, paragraph 7)

G. Round down to the nearest whole number to get the adjusted party list seat eligibility for each party. Note the total number of seats to be allocated (in this case, 129)

H. To allocate the remaining seats subtract the adjusted party list seat eligibility from the result in F to get the remainder for each party.

I. Allocated an additional seat to the 12 parties with the largest remainders.

Add the largest remainder seats (I) to the adjusted party list seats (G) to get the total party list seats for each party.





Scenario 2

A. Divide the total number of valid votes by the number of seats (500) to get the quota (how many votes a party has to win to get a seat).[2]

B. Divide each party’s total votes by the quota.

C. Round down to the nearest whole number to get the total seat target for each party.

D. Subtract the number of constituency seats won by each party from their total seat target in step C to get the number of party list seats each party is eligible for.

E. After calculating the party list seat eligibility we the check to see whether the total number of party list seats to be allocated is above or below 150. In this case, because the number exceeds 150 (152 to be exact) the we go to step F. (If the total was below 150 there is a different procedure).

F. Multiply the number of eligible party list seats for each party by 150. (Section 128, paragraph 7)

G. Divide the result of F by 150 plus the number of seats above 150 from E. So, 152 in this case. (Section 128, paragraph 7)

H. Round down to the nearest whole number to get the adjusted party list seat eligibility for each party. Note the total number of seats to be allocated (in this case, 138)

I. To allocate the remaining seats subtract the adjusted party list seat eligibility from the result in G to get the remainder for each party.

J. Allocated an additional seat to the 12 parties with the largest remainders.

K. Add the largest remainder seats (J) to the adjusted party list seats (H) to get the total party list seats for each party.



Notes:

[1]This is the Hare quota.

[2]This is the Hare quota.