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Majority

From Academic Kids

A majority is a subset of a group that is more than half of the entire group. This should not be confused with a plurality, which is a subset having the largest number of parts. A plurality is not necessarily a majority, as the largest subset may be less than half of the entire group.

For example, in a hypothetical group of 40 athletes there are:

In this group, a majority would consist of more than half the total number of athletes, or 21 athletes. The group of all ball sport players together (15 football players + 6 table tennis players = 21) comprise a majority. However, football players, 15 in number, comprise a plurality, not a majority.

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Parliamentary rules

In parliamentary procedure (the "rules of order" concerning the conduct of business in a deliberative body), the term 'majority' refers to "more than half." As it relates to a vote, a majority is more than half of the votes cast (noting that an abstention is simply the refusal to vote).

In politics and political voting systems, there are several different popular concepts relating to a majority:

These concepts are not to be confused with the concept of a majority as understood in parliamentary procedure, which is a common error. While they do have counterparts in parliamentary procedure, in it they are undefined as termed, and their discussion is beyond the scope of this article.

Election results

Governments can be elected by large majorities, small majoritys, and may even be minorty governents with independents or third parties holding the balance of power. Here is a list of some terms used to describe election results:

  • 79-0: Wipe out/ Clean sweep
  • 78-1: Token opposition
  • 77-2: Phone booth opposition barely able to second eachother's motions (British Columbia general election, 2001)
  • 75-4: Opposition failed to gain party status.
  • 74-5: Opposition barely managed to gain party status
  • 69-10: Overwhealming majority of 59
  • 68-11: Cricket team opposition.
  • 49-30: Strong majority of 19.
  • 44-35: Comfortable majority of 9 - government can afford to have a few members away and still be sure of keeping a majority.
  • 40-39: Wafer-thin majority of 1 - firm discipline needed by the government to hold on to power.
  • 39-39-1: Independent or third party holds balance of power

These numbers ingnore the need to find a speaker, who may or may not have a deliberative vote.

See Also

Other kinds of majority include:

See also

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