- “STV could allow extending suffrage to do more than add to the ranks of disengaged voters”
- "’Copper-fastening’ the voting system would be undemocratic.”
- “Only a preferential voting system, such as the Single Transferable Vote … provides both proportionality and accountability.”
- "People will not vote unless they can see their vote can make a difference"
- Why should I vote?
- The Church and justice in voting
- STV would help solve the devolution problem
- Voting dissatisfaction
- Reports of the death of electoral reform have been greatly exaggerated
- A lesson from Rotherham
What are elections for?
Contributed by Peter Morley:
There have been several reports following Paxman’s interview with Brand, and now Clegg has added his accusation that as Paxman earns his living from politics he shouldn’t sneer at it.
Clegg says correctly that politics is about the way we decide how we pay taxes, support our hospitals and schools, whether to go to war and how to deal with climate change. That is surely too important for Brand and Paxman to discourage people from voting.
But Brand and Paxman do not seem to understand how British elections work.
We do NOT elect our Prime Minister or our Head of State, the Queen. We do not even elect which party forms the Government. We elect individuals to represent our constituencies in the House of Commons. But our voting system puts the country in the hands of the 40 or so “marginals” where the MPs elected by of a very small minority – the “swing” voters – decide which party forms the Government and thereby who becomes Prime Minister.
That is not the effect of representative democracy. It is the effect of first past the post – an out date and pernicious voting system.
Instead of abstaining and regarding elections as immaterial, Brand and Paxman would do well to learn more about the benefits of STV and then campaign for it openly on their respective programmes. Now that really WOULD switch the public on to vote.