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Defining Democracy – Electoral Reform and the Struggle for Power in New York City - Oxford Scholarship Online
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Defining Democracy: Electoral Reform and the Struggle for Power in New York City

Daniel O. Prosterman


Defining Democracy examines struggles over electoral reform in New York City to clarify our understanding of democracy’s evolution in the United States and the world. In 1936, New Yorkers approved a radical change in local democracy by instituting proportional representation (PR) in city council elections. Rather than traditional winner-take-all elections between two candidates representing two political parties, PR allowed voters to rank candidates on their ballots in order of preference and guaranteed victory to anyone polling more than 75,000 votes. This system enabled the elec ... More

Keywords: new york city, democracy, voting, elections, politics, campaigns, representation, democratic party, republican party, communist party

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2013 Print ISBN-13: 9780195377736
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2013 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195377736.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Daniel O. Prosterman, author
Salem College