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Yi-ching Hsiao, Assistant Professor, Department of Public Administration, Tamkang University.
People's Perception of the Party Lists in Taiwan's 2008 Legislative Election and It's Effect (in Chinese) Download
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The mixed-member majoritarian system was first adopted in the 2008 legislative election in Taiwan. In accordance with this electoral system, each voter has two ballots to cast at the same time. The first ballot is for the candidates in the single member district, and the second is for the party list, which determines the seats each party receives. Theoretically, voters' decision on the second ballot depends not only on his or her party identification but also on the quality of party list. Since the two ballots system was recently adopted in 2008, most people are not familiar with the mixed-member majoritarian system. Therefore, this article attempts to examine the voters' perception of the party list and their preference, and furthermore to assess whether their perception and preference would affect their voting choice on the second ballot. The empirical survey data of TEDS2008L is analyzed in this article to answer these questions. It is found that while most voters can neither recognize the names on the lists of the two major parties nor indicate their preference among the lists. However, voters are significantly more likely to vote for the party list they recognize or prefer. This result indicates that parties should make every endeavor to enhance the quality of the party list in order to receive more votes in this newly adopted electoral system in Taiwan.