The Other Election

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On November 4th, Americans will chose their next president. Two weeks before that, the world will chose the newest members of the Security Council. The excellent Security Council Report offers a nice run down of which countries are in the running.

Here’s how it breaks down: Five of the ten non-permanent Security Council seats will be vacated in 2008. Two of these seats belong to the Western Europe and Others Group (“others” being Canada, New Zeland, Australia, Israel and the United States,) one to Asia, one to Africa and one to Latin America. Uganda and Mexico are running uncontested for their respective seats. Japan is basically uncontested for the Asia seat, except for a Lyndon LaRouche style candidacy by Iran.

This leaves Iceland, Austria and Turkey to vie for only two WEOG seats. The Security Council Report expects a nail-biter.

There are a number of possible election scenarios for the two Western European seats. The simplest would be:

* two of the three candidates obtain the necessary two-thirds of the votes in the first round of voting – but given the strong support which all three of the candidates seem to enjoy this seems unlikely.

Another possible scenario is:

* one of the three candidates obtains the two-thirds of the votes in the first round but neither of the other two obtains a two-thirds majority. The voting then would continue for the one remaining seat until one candidate obtains the necessary number of seats or withdraws.

A further possible scenario is:

* multiple rounds of voting take place because all three candidates initially fail to obtain the two-thirds majority. This is likely to occur if all three candidates have a strong base of support that does not waiver as voting continues.

I’m predicting scenario three. No lines up yet on Intrade.

(Photo from Flickr under a creative commons license)

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