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Thread: UK electoral system referendum

  1. #1

    Question UK electoral system referendum

    Hello all
    I suppose this is particularly aimed at those of you in the UK

    How do you intend to vote in the upcoming referendum regarding a change from the FPTP system to AV?

    Personally I am voting 'No'. I feel there is a strong argument for electoral reform, but AV as considerable drawbacks, and is potentially worse.

  2. #2
    crazykittensmile

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    I will be voting 'Yes.'

    I don't think that AV is the perfect system, but I think that it is an improvement on FPTP, and I also think a yes vote clearly says 'I am not happy with the current voting system and I support change.' If I voted no I would be worried that that would convey that I am happy with FPTP and do not welcome any change, and that another opportunity for electoral reform would not be welcomed for years to come based on assumption that the public are happy with things as they are.

    Plus, I see voting yes in the referendum as voting against the Tories and against David Cameron, which in truth is possibly an even bigger reason why I shall be voting yes.

  3. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by babyjess View Post
    I will be voting 'Yes.'

    I don't think that AV is the perfect system, but I think that it is an improvement on FPTP, and I also think a yes vote clearly says 'I am not happy with the current voting system and I support change.' If I voted no I would be worried that that would convey that I am happy with FPTP and do not welcome any change, and that another opportunity for electoral reform would not be welcomed for years to come based on assumption that the public are happy with things as they are.

    Plus, I see voting yes in the referendum as voting against the Tories and against David Cameron, which in truth is possibly an even bigger reason why I shall be voting yes.
    I will also be voting 'Yes'. While I don't share Babyjess's dislike of the Tories, I agree with her reasoning. AV is not my ideal system, but voting against it will kill the issue of electoral reform for a generation. AV may have certain flaws, but in practise, I don't regard them as any more significant in practise than those of FPTP. If it causes significant disruption, and a broader political realignment - mission accomplished. A giant f*** you is what the political system could do with at the moment. AV is a stepping-stone towards my ultimate goal of STV in 4-5-member constituencies.

    Unfortunately, however, I fear that the public don't really care about the issue, and a low turnout for the referendum may delegitimise the result.

  4. #4
    Peachy

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    Can you explain what exactly is on the table there to vote on? What's "AV", and what's "FPTP"? I haven't exactly been following British politics lately.

  5. #5
    Supersam1223

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    Quote Originally Posted by Peachy View Post
    Can you explain what exactly is on the table there to vote on? What's "AV", and what's "FPTP"? I haven't exactly been following British politics lately.
    Im English and I don't understand it.

    Anyway why do you need a vote about voting?
    It's just putting an X on a piece of paper and putting it in a box, and then some unlucky person has to count the votes.

    It's a simple process, I don't see any need to complicate things by having multiple systems to choose from.

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by Peachy View Post
    Can you explain what exactly is on the table there to vote on? What's "AV", and what's "FPTP"? I haven't exactly been following British politics lately.
    FPTP is First Past The Post, the current British parliamentary election system, under which the person with the most votes wins the seat - no matter how few votes they got by any absolute measure. There's nothing to prevent a person winning with 10% of the vote, just so long as every other candidate got even less. AV is the Alternative Vote, under is a preference voting system, under which second, third and so on preferences are redistributed among the remaining candidates as the candidates with the fewest votes are eliminated. In theory, it would ensure that the successful candidate would have the support of at least 50% of the voters, albeit not necessarily their first preferences.



    Quote Originally Posted by supersam1223 View Post
    Im English and I don't understand it.

    Anyway why do you need a vote about voting?
    It's just putting an X on a piece of paper and putting it in a box, and then some unlucky person has to count the votes.

    It's a simple process, I don't see any need to complicate things by having multiple systems to choose from.
    The main objection to the current voting system is that it produces large swings in the makeup of parliament, does not reflect the political makeup of the electorate, and effectively disenfranchises anyone who votes for a third or fourth party, or lives in a "safe" constituency. The Liberal Democrats, in particular, tend to suffer from the effects of tactical anti-Tory voting, in which people who would prefer to vote for them, instead vote Labour to keep the Tories out (or occasionally vote Tory to keep Labour out). The current system also effectively makes it impossible to get rid of an unpopular MP without voting for a different party, which most people aren't prepared to do - though strictly speaking, you don't have to change the voting system to fix that.

  7. #7

    Default

    Personally, I'll vote 'No'.
    As the system we have now may not be great, but in my opinion AV is worse- Its not as representative of the population, someone who gets the most votes, may not win. Other places in the world where AV is used such as Austrailia want to get rid of it. Calculating the results is time consuming and its expensive :/

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by Peachy View Post
    Can you explain what exactly is on the table there to vote on? What's "AV", and what's "FPTP"? I haven't exactly been following British politics lately.
    The reason for the referendum is that in last years general election there was no clear winner.
    As a result the Liberal Democrats formed a coalition government with the Conservatives.
    One of the agreements was that there is to be a referendum on the matter (as the party's are opposed in their view)

    Although it is debatable whether AV will promote coalition governments, I feel we should not adopt a system which may do this. Can we trust Nick Clegg to continually be the king maker? It would maker their pre-election promises worthless- consider the tuition fee debacle. Luckily, if all goes to plan, I will go to uni this year, avoiding the increase.
    Even as a Conservative supporter, I genuinely feel for back bench Lib Dem MPs and their voters being shafted liked this.

    Oh, back on topic, here is a site which although biased, does give explanation behind the key reasons to vote NO:
    The AV Referendum Site | AV2011

    I wonder if there is a link between peoples vote in the 2010 election and the referendum, or indeed a link between voting intentions for the referendum and this years local elections.

  9. #9

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    I will be voting no, very no. It should be simple person with most votes wins, simple - therefore the majority of the population in happy. With AV the person in 2nd or 3rd place has a much better chance of winning, which is complete BS, who would want the christian party winning just because under AV they get a better weighting. Only 3 countries in the world use AV and all are in the process of abolishing it, why does the UK want to adopt this?

    My main fear is that the majority of people have been poorly educated about AV and will vote yes 'just cause they want a change'

    I got a leaflet through the door the other day about AV but it was mainly an attack on Lib Dem policies not holding up in coalition, so many people are going to chuck this away without realizing what it really is about.

  10. #10

    Default

    i'm not bothering to vote as i see little difference being made to any possible outcome: rich people will still be the only ones who have all the power and who pay their thugs (the police) to do their dirty work.
    all-in-all, the whole AV scheme (from it's suggestion to it's possible implementation) just sounds like a means by which to expand government and government personnel in order to keep unemployment rates for the middle-classes artificially low.

    besides which, i've already devised a system of candidate selection that is almost foolproof and which would only allow the most dedicated and best minded to stand for election: all candidates must self-amputate their secondary arm.
    that should keep candidate numbers down, thereby negating any need for a complex AV system. and since only rich people can stand for election [with any possible chance of success], the candidates who don't get elected will only have lost an arm that don't really need.

    so, no need to spend all that money on silly referendums and the excess of needless graduates can be put to work mining coal (we should re-open our pits). two birds, one stone

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