Proportional Representation
PROPORTIONAL REPRESENTATION refers to a variety of voting methods that assure the outcome of an election will be balanced.  Simply put, if a party wins 51% of the vote, it gets 51% of the seats; if another gets 8% of the vote, it will win 8% of the seats.
 
This may sound like something that should naturally take place, but the United States of America bases its elections on the outcome in each district rather than in the country as a whole, thus skewing the results.  Many voters end up unrepreresented. 
 
Most industrialized countries, on the other hand, employ fairly accurate methods to assure that the seats won by each party or candidate reflects the proportion of votes earned in the election.
 
There are three main methods used in the quest for fair elections through proportional representation: Mixed Member Proportional (MMP), Single Transferable Vote (STV), and Party List systems. Below are links to pages explaining how each method works.
MMP
Mixed Member
Proportional
STV
Single Transferable Vote
Party List
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Click on the picture to see John Cleese talk about PR
 
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VIDEO: How Australians Vote
VIDEO: Canadian elections
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