by Max Barry

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by The Eternal Misfortune of Pencil Sharpeners 2. . 33 reads.


The February 2018 Local Council elections saw a field of fourteen candidates, the most of any of the eleven LC elections in TSP’s history. The candidates were a youthful bunch, with eleven of them being founded less than a year ago, and all but one having never served in TSP’s government before.

The campaigning on the RMB brought a new meaning to the word ‘enthusiasm’, with several candidates posting campaign dispatches and messages even before the campaigning period had started. With the LC being a more flexible position than most, and many of the candidates being new nations, campaign ideas and techniques varied wildly. Some candidates focussed on the activity they would bring to the role, with polls being a focus of both Auphelia and Tilipria’s campaigns. Games and quizzes were also frequently mentioned as an aim, with North Prarie and Midand citing Aumeltopia’s contributions last term as something they would continue. However, RMB moderation was the most common thread among campaigns, with some disagreement between candidates. New Haudenosaunee Confederacy advocated a tougher stance, stating ‘I've seen rule-breaking posts unmoderated before and I believe that these posts need moderation’. Rikutso, on the other hand, favoured a more tolerant approach, saying ‘we need to be lenient and make sure they know they're doing something wrong before bringing down the wrath of Poseidon’.

Due to the NationStates polling function only allowing a maximum of twelve candidates, there had to be preliminary polls first to reduce the number of candidates to eleven, with Re-Open Nominations being the final option. The draw for these preliminaries was done randomly, with seven candidates in each. The lowest three candidates from across both polls were to be eliminated, though Zaluen Kelva was automatically disqualified due to leaving The South Pacific. The other two to be eliminated were The First Order 1, who received two votes despite not posting a campaign, and Nagaland and South East Asam, the newest nation to run, who also received two votes.

The first main round of voting was very one-sided, with Auphelia receiving 40 votes, more than triple the number of second placed Midand, and therefore becoming the first confirmed Local Councillor for this term. The second poll was a closer affair, with Midand and Havenfell neck and neck for much of the three-day voting period. However, Midand pulled away towards the end, securing the second seat with 38 votes to Havenfell’s 23. The third poll was even closer, with North Prarie, whose Island Democratic Party had already seen member Midand elected, pulling into an early lead. However, Southern Progress Party member Havenfell clawed back the deficit, and in the end won comfortably, with 29 votes to North Prarie’s 16. Unsurprisingly for First Past the Post elections, candidates other than the two leaders in each poll did not fare well, with none of the third placed candidates achieving more than 6 votes. Voter turnout was reasonably consistent throughout the five voting periods, with the first four all having between 80 and 90 voters, though the fifth saw a drop-off to only 68 voters.

Having beaten off a very strong field of candidates, the elected Councillors have very high expectations to live up to, and we await to see what this term will bring.