Monday, November 23, 2015

Election by Lot: Mississippi edition

The BBC reports that a seat in the Mississippi House was determined by drawing straws, after two candidates each received 4,589 votes.

This isn't a 'first'. The BBC mentions cases in New Mexico and Alaska, without giving any details. I suspect the former is this case (which I commented on at the time). I'm also aware of a case concerning a local, city council in Florida last year (Guardian; me).

Intriguingly, the report ends by saying that - after using a coin toss in 2006 - the state of Connecticut eliminated chance games the following year. There's no indication as to what method they do use though. Does anyone out there know?

Tuesday, November 03, 2015

Child Selection in the News

There's a piece in today's Guardian about whether parents should genetically engineer their children. It does note that editing children's genes goes beyond merely selecting them (via Preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis). Nonetheless, the piece refers to the ideas of Julian Savulescu - who has defended the view that parents have a moral obligation to select for better children - so it seemed like a reasonable excuse to point again to my latest publication, which defends Savulescu's position against one particular line of criticism. More details here.