The Bran Report

It's good for parts of you that you'd probably rather not think about.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

The Long Parliament

As long time readers know, I am a little bit broken in the head. That's why, since I last posted on the Bran Report, I have done nothing except play with the Equal Proportions Method. Want to know my conclusions? Of course you do.

I've crunched the numbers for two scenarios. In the first, I used the standard method: start with one congressmen per state, then add each successive member according to the state with the highest priority, as defined by
where P is the population and n is the number of congressmen assigned to that state so far. The total number of seats, 435, remains unchanged.

In the second, I left the existing states with the number of representatives they had already, and added new seats for the new states. In this version, I tried to add a number of seats so that the new states had an A-value as close as possible to the national average (613057.3). Given the variation between Utah (736139.78) and Wyoming (364162.82), the values were pretty good: all between 600 and 700 thousand.

Either way, England becomes far and away the number one state to woo. As it stands, California is the most influential with 53 Representatives, followed by Texas with 32 and New York with 29. Ohio and Florida, famous as election-breakers, have 18 and 25 respectively.

In method two, England gets 79 new seats. Scotland gets 7, the same as Colorado, Alabama and Louisiana. Wales gets 4, the same as Mississippi, Kansas and Arkansas. Northern Ireland get 2, the same as Maine, Hawaii or Rhode Island. There are 7 states with only one representative. The Old Countries as a whole get 92 new seats, bringing the total up to 527.

With Method One, the states are in the same order but the smaller total number of seats gives relatively more power to the smaller states. In this scenario, England has 60 seats, and California is knocked down to 44 (losing 9 seats). Texas and New York lose a half-dozen seats each and almost all the middling states lose two. Scotland get 6 (one less than before), Wales get 4 and Northern Ireland 2 (just as in the other method).

By happy chance, both methods give the Old County States 17% of the Representatives.

You know what? Day well spent.


At 4:56 pm, June 15, 2007, Blogger Laura said...

This week, I learnt that there are 180 degrees in a triangle, AND on a straight line.

Maths was more interesting than I thought.


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