Tuesday, 1 February 2011

The Importance of 5th May

On the 5th of May UK voters have a choice.

Despite what people say - the choice is really quite simple.

We can leave the system as it is and forgo the right to debate and question how our MPs are elected and how they claim to represent us. If we lose this chance, we won't get another for years...perhaps ever. Many politicians want to keep things the way they are. No surprise there.

OR we can change the system so that people begin to realise the power their vote has. They will become more involved in local politics and in evaluating the alternatives. They will be encouraged to vote and to see the effect it has.

It seems to me that the current system is rather like running a restaurant where everyone has to eat what is 'the most popular item' on the menu. Well you all have one vote...so everyone eats chips.

The alternative being proposed is not proportional. It is a variant of the first past the post system that we already have. In this case you choose from the range available and you put them in order of preference.

So I'd like B then A and (if I must) I'd go for D but I'll never vote for E or C. Quite a complex reflection of the voter's preferences and requiring some thought from the voter. A good thing I would think.

I'm sure it will take some time for us to get used to it, but also the political parties will also take time to understand them (you can bet they'll be working out the system even now). But at least they can't count on a "winner takes all" system. There will be no such thing as a safe seat.

You can read the arguments at http://www.no2av.org/ and at http://www.yestofairervotes.org.

But don't try looking for www.yes2av.org ... the people at the no campaign thought it fair they should buy that URL and link it to their own website.

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