Thursday, December 03, 2009

PR referendum?

Well, off down south for a couple of days - so blogging may be a bit light ...

... various Electoral Reform Society (ERS) events/meetings to attend and bound to be significant debate around the latest moves on a potential referendum on the UK electoral system.

Of course, straight AV (the alternative vote) is not proportional - but if the Constitutional Reform Bill is to be amended in order to get rid of FPTP (first past the post), by a system that uses preferential voting (AV), is it really impossible that the Bill could be amended just a bit further to preferential voting in multi-member wards (STV)?

... or amended to seek preferential voting for all elections - local (English and Welsh) and Lords, as well as Westminster?

... unlikely - maybe?

But not impossible.


Anonymous said...

Of course, STV is not proportional either. How many Green councillors are there in Scotland? Yet they get plenty of votes and elected in more proportional systems such the Scottish Parliament's AMS lists.

STV has its biases. Smaller rural wards favour parties that are stronger in rural areas; and it is also better for medium sized, centrist parties. Is it any wonder that the Liberals love it and have been a driving force behind the ERS promotion of STV at the expense of other more proportional and more accountable voting systems?

Andrew said...


Thanks for the comment - don't disagree with some of what you say, and I don't think I've ever claimed STV is 100% proportional??

- it is worth noting though that there are 8 Green Councillors (three in Edinburgh, and 5 in Glasgow) in Scotland and only 2 MSPs currently :-(

Whilst I'm willing to accept one could argue there are more proportional systems than STV - I, personally, do not know of any other system that makes an elected Member more accountable for to the voter? I say that as someone who was 8-years a Coucillor under FPTP, and now nearing 3-years a Councillor under STV.

And not just theoretically anymore, but from experience, I know why most politicians prefer FPTP ... you have to work a damned site harder under STV!

I'd also question your assertion that it benefits the Lib-Dems ... they may be the majority Coalition partner in Edinburgh, but the new (STV) voting-system did not significantly boost their representation from what they had before under FPTP ... it did for the Greens though :-)

Thanks for checking out the blog ...