What would be great would be if National got 55%, Labour 15% and a bunch of electorates and Green 30%, leading to a Green-led government. I'd just love the impotent rage of the righties if that happened.
I think you and I have a different definition of "great".
If we want to help the market, we could require parties to disclose the exact method used to order their list, so that voters can decide for themselves whether it is democratic enough for them.
Have I misunderstood this change, or does this mean that the Maori Party, who have never received a single seat from list votes, will lose any electorate seats that are in excess of their party vote ?
You have misunderstood it. The Electoral Commisison is proposing that a) parties which win an electorate don't bring in extra list seats (unless thye also pass the threshold); and b) that Parliament be capped at 120 seats. The latter change abolishes overhang, by effectively taking it out of other parties' allocations. And it seems to have only a minor effect on overall proportionality.
Translating the Electoral Commission's views on the threshhold into the real world, they think the Maori Party are ineffective representatives and that Jim Anderton was extremist, and that both should be denied a place in Parliament if they hadn't had the good luck to win electorate seats. You don't have to approve of either of those examples to recognise that this conclusion is a bit dubious.
But not 2005. There, the Gallgher Index would have doubled (Sadly they don't include results from 1996 - 2002 so we can get a full picture)
Basically, at best we have a Parliament as representative as we have now. But we're looking at significantly worse in some cases, which have been shown to occur in our electoral environment. And on average, they admit we'll be getting a slightly less representative Parliament than we have at present.
That doesn't sound like it is worth supporting to me.
I have to say I'm not entirely convinced by their reasoning on the threshold. A lot of assertion, no testing of empirical evidence of the effects of more smaller parties in our Parliament. And if you look at their graph, more submitters favoured a lower threshold than 4%. They had an opportunity to take a principled look at the options, and they blew it (and then recommended an anti-democratic move into the bargain).
The Commission has kicked for touch on the electorate MP/list MP ratio, saying that given current settings it is not going to be a problem before 2026. Back to you, Parliament, they said in effect.
That's because it can't be answered without knowing the Constitutional Review's answer on the Maori seats.
but they have taken a great, steaming dump on Labour's plan to break the electoral system by altering the ratio (and give themselves more, and so more urban electorates)
This is just silly. The same argument could be used for me to complain that I'm being discriminated against because my local Rabbi refuses to marry me in his Synagogue on the grounds that I'm not Jewish.
That they refused to marry you, certainly. Because officiating marriages (as opposed to weddings) is a public function conferred by law, not a private, religious one.
(Use of a particular religious building is not a public function conferred by law, and whether refusal constitutes discrimination depends on whether it is generally available to the public. If its not, then they have no problem in that regard)
And with all due respect to my good friend Idiot/Savant his reading is not settled law.
No, its not. And to be honest, I doubt it ever will be, because people strongly prefer to be married by a celebrant who wants to marry them.
Basically, the only think I know is that when I am handed a marriage licence form, it says that it "authorises but does not require" me to marry the couple.
The joys of legislation written in 1955.
Remember in interpreting that that you need to do so in a manner consistent with the BORA. Which obviously means that it will not permit discrimination on the basis of grounds prohibited by the HRA.