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What is Proportional Representation?

Proportional Representation is an electoral system in which parties gain seats in government in proportion to the number of votes cast for them. If n percent of the electorate support a particular political party as their favorite, then roughly n percent of seats will be won by that party.



  • Fair to all parties

  • Proportional Representation gives minority parties and independent candidates a much better chance of being elected 

  • Allows new and different voices to be heard and give more people the chance to make a difference

  • Can potentially provide a route for extremists to force their way into the political mainstream. The extremists will have some say in government even though they have minimal support

  • Some would say that Proportional Representation produces weak coalition governments rather than strong majority governments, which arguably can lead to indecision, compromise and even legislative paralysis

United States and Other Countries

Proportional Representation is not widely used in the US. Countries like Austria, Belgium, Poland, Spain, and Switzerland use Proportional Representation have different parties. 


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