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Waheed Abbas

Roll no



Political Science


Methods of Election

Submitted to

Ms. Kanza Sharif



Table of Contents
Definition of Election

Types of Elections
General Elections
Primary Elections

Methods of Elections
Direct Elections
Merits and Demerits

Indirect Elections
Merits and Demerits


Definition of Election
An election is a formal decisionmaking process by which a population chooses an individual to hold public
office. Elections have been the usual mechanism by which
modern representative democracy has operated since the 17th

century. Elections may fill offices in the legislature, sometimes in

the executive and judiciary, and for regional and local government. This
process is also used in many other private and business organizations,
from clubs to voluntary associations.

act or process of choosing someone for a public office by voting]1

Types of Election
There are deffirent kinds of elections.i.e refrendum, general
elections and primary elections.

A referendum is a direct vote in which an entire electorate is
asked to either accept or reject a particular proposal, usually a
piece of legislation which has been passed into law by the local
legislative body and signed by the pertinent executive official(s).

General Elections
An election, usually held at regular intervals, in which candidates
are elected in all or most constituencies or electoral districts of a

Primary Elections
[A primary election is an election that narrows the field of
candidates before the general election. Primary elections are one
means by which a political party nominates candidates for the
next general election]2

Methods of elections

There are two methods of elections.i.e. direct election,s and

indirect elections.

Direct Elections
Direct election is a term describing a system of choosing political
officeholders in which the voters directly cast ballots for the
person, persons, or political party that they desire to see elected.
The method by which the winner or winners of a direct election
are chosen depends upon the electoral system used. The most
commonly used systems are the plurality system and the two
round system for single winner elections, such as a presidential
election, and party-list proportional representation for the election
of a legislature.

Definition of Direct elections

[In this methods the voters cast their votes for or against the
various candidates. The candidates who secures majority of the
votes is declared successful and is returned as the
representatives from that constituency]3

Examples of Direct Elections

Direct election was practiced in Europe, USA and Switzerland .

Merits of Direct Elections

There are many advantages of direct election.
Stimulates Political Interest
The strongest argument in favour of direct election is that it
stimulates political interest of voters in election and politics. Each
voter feels that he has a voice and a share in making or
unmaking of government.

Broadens the Mental Horizon

Direct election are hotly contested by political parties and
their candidates, for electoral decesion are directly made by the
people. The candidates and their workers directly approach the
people with their own party and personal manifestoes and

Less exposed to Corruption

The representatives are elected by large number of voters
who can not be bribed. Hence there are less chances of corruption
in this system.

Demerits of Direct Election

Gives power to Ignorent masses
Average voter is ignorant , unintelligent, uninterested and
indeffirent to the problems of his country. He does not often
understand the values of his vote, which he casts for other
considerations than political.

Passions and Propaganda dominate Direct Election

Direct election means election compaigns and intensive political

propaganda for or against deffirent candidates. [The average
voters is unable to resist its influence . Thus the openion of the
people is made for them by professional politicians and

Indirect Elections

An indirect democracy is a type of democratic government in
which voters choose delegates to create the laws of government
on their behalf. A common term that is used interchangeably with
indirect democracy is representative democracy.

Indirect democracy is usually contrasted with direct democracy. In

direct democracy, people directly vote on whether a law will be
passed. But in indirect democracy, people only choose the
representatives who will then make the law.

Definition of Indirect Elections

[An indirect election is an election in which individual citizens vote
for electors who will select a candidate. In other words, they don't
vote for the candidate directly, choosing instead to put the
decision in the hands of others.]5

Examples of Indirect Elections

It is practicing in India, Pakistan, Hungary, Israel, Germany and

Italy etc.

Merits of indirect Elections

Ensures cool consideration of Political issues
Indirect election means which necessarily imply a longer process
of choosing the representatives .

Good for Politically Unorganised Countries

The method of indirect election is good for countries whose
people are educationally backword and politically unorganised .

Usefull for Electing Second Chambers

The method of indirect is also usefull for electing the second

Helpful in Choosing Good Persons

The method of direct election is helpful in choosing good and
sensible persons.

People Can Elect Candidates of their Own Will

The advantage of indirect election is that people entrust the

power of voting to other people whom they feel will choose and
elect the right candidate for them.

Demerits of Indirect Elections

It breeds corruption
As the number of second voters of the electoral college is small ,
intrigue and corruption are easy. They can be easily bribed or
intimidated or otherwised influenced by interested parties and
vested interests.

It Enhance Bribary
In this method of elections the voters can easiloy be bribed.

It kills Popular Interest in Elections

The greatest defect of this method is that it makes the primary
voters indeffirent to the elections. They know that their votes are
merely the first stage of a process the end of which may be quite
deffirent from what they would vote for.
It is out of harmony with the spirit of modern democracy
Another defect of this method is that it weakens , if not actually
vitiates, the principal of representatives democracy.

Similarities between Direct and Indirect

There are also many similarities between indirect and direct
elections. These are given below.

Although the process of voting differs in direct and indirect

elections, finally the intention of both the methods is to vote for a
suitable person who can come into power and hold public office.

Not only this, both type of elections allows equal

representation of voters across all states irrespective of the size
of the state.

[The population of every state is revised every ten years to

make sure that the number of people voting or voters are equal to
the state population. This equal representation is applicable for
both - directly elected elections and indirect elections.]6

In both these types of elections, it is seen that the winner

generally has to be the one who secures majority of the votes.

Even if direct and indirect elections differ in process, there is one

important aspect that is common, and that is, the benefit and
welfare of the citizens and of the nation

We can conclude from all above disscussion that both direct and
indirect methods have advantages as well as disadvantages.
Indirect election have the flaw of impairing the self respect and
sense of responsibility of the voters. But it is helpful for choosing
good and sensible persons and is also good for politically
unorganised countries.
Direct election places powers in the hands of ignorant masses and
the opinion of the people is made for them by professional
politicians and propagandists. In other side this method broadens
the mental horizon of people and also lessened the chances of
However, whatever the electoral mechanism is, if the quality of
the candidates is low, it is difficult to expect local governance to
improve. One short term solution that could have a revolutionary
impact is to consider a radical option, i.e. for all who want to be
candidates to publicly announce their wealth, and prove that their
wealth had been lawfully obtained.

[1] http://www.merriamwebster.com/dictionary/election
[2] www.boundless.com/politicalscience/textbooks
[3] Mazhar ul Haq, Political Science Theory
and Practice[Lahore; Bookland, 2003] 491
[4] Mazhar ul Haq, Political Science Theory
and Practice[Lahore; Bookland, 2003] 492
[5] John Cortney, Elections[Wales;Franklin
Printing Press ,2002]211
[6] John Cortney, Elections[Wales; Franklin
Printing Press, 2002]217
[7] Jordokupil, The Process of Election[New

[1] Haq Mazharul. Political Science
Theory and Practice. Lahore:
Bookland 1995
[2] Cortney John. Elections. Wales:
Franklin Printing Press 2002
[3] Kupiljordo. The Process of
Election. New Dehli: Printland 1999