Monday, 18 April 2011

Vote 'NO' on May 5th

This country prides itself in its Democracy where people are all given the same chances and we all have the right to vote. So why should we give this right more to others and less to some? AV will change the Democracy of this country right from the very core of our political system, that core being its citizens voting.This new voting system will allow some people to have their votes counted more than once while your vote will only be counted once. This destroys the principle of “one-man one-vote”, which this, and many other countries, pride themselves in when calling themselves a Democracy.

There are only three countries in the world that use this system, Australia, Fiji and Papa New Guinea. While First Past the Post, our current system is used by 50 countries and is the most widely used system. It seems odd to move from the most used system to one of the least used systems does it not?

Those who claim that the system will make the results more representative cannot prove any of this, neither can those who claim the system will allow extremist parties more chance of getting a seat. However there are quite a number of Political Parties in Britain meaning that it will be harder for a certain candidate to get over 50% of the vote if people spread their second and third choices too widely. Parties such as Green and BNP are still not even guaranteed to get any closer to being elected through this system anyway. Australia uses this system and got its first Green MP in 2010, the same year the UK got it’s first Green MP, and Alliance MP, using our current system. It took Australia 90 years to become more representative using this system. Why fix what isn’t broken?

First Past the Post is an easier and simpler system to use rather than AV; it provides us with strong accountable governments. The current election outcome has been a blip on the radar, while with AV, Coalition Governments will become a more common occurrence. Previous to the coalition government created in 2010 the official Coalition was the National Government during the war which was clearly only there for National Interest. During the twentieth century there have been unofficial coalitions where a party has agreed to pass laws made by the governments as seen in 1978 when Labours majority was eroded during by-elections and relied on Liberal support. This agreement was short of a full coalition and was only there because of by-elections, so it is debateable at how much of a tangent this government actually is.

Supporters of AV will claim that its success will bring more ideas to the table and that this will result in better governing. In my opinion this is a na├»ve view. The amount of ideas will not change, what will change however is where they are debated, the debate will move from the House of Commons to across the Cabinet Table. Too many ideas and opinions on a Cabinet table is not good idea, as it will cause for slow and ineffective governing. Ideas in opposition to the government are needed in opposition to it not within it. I believe that a ‘Coalition Opposition’ rather than ’Coalition Government’ is needed for a better debate and scrutiny of any policy. This in itself makes the government more accountable for its actions as you can easily blame one party for its mistakes; and blame is not blurred by a weak coalition.

First Past the Post is the better option so I am asking you to vote ‘No’ on May 5th. I believe you will be making the better choice, personally I believe there is much strength in having a proportional representation system in place, but I would rather a different system. Say ‘No’ on May 5th and fight for a system better than AV! Say ‘No’ on May 5th and do not let this 2nd or 3rd best system become our only system!


  1. I think it is inappropriate of you to use wording such as "This new voting system will allow some people to have their votes counted more than once while your vote will only be counted once." This is exploiting your readers' emotions, making them feel victimised by AV rather than providing a rational argument.

    Also, if you are in favour of a more proportionally representative system, why have you not given an example of this, rather than solidly defending something that you admit isn't the best option for this country?

  2. What you quoted is true however and yes it is true that it is possible the other way round that your vote could be counted more than others. Yes I agree that I could have worded it differently but I want people to think about what I say and not listen to everything that the YES campaign has said.

    The reason I have not discussed something else is because this blog was about why you should not vote AV and not what other options there is out there.


  4. you could be like the prime minister. =] xx

  5. As Der Junge has said, under the AV your vote is not counted twice. However, it's counted once, while most of the times under the FPTP system your vote is never counted.

  6. Well actually, your vote is ALWAYS counted in First Past the Post, it may be a wasted vote but it is still counted. Also in AV you can have your vote counted twice. If the person you vote #1 for doesn't make the cut then the person you vote #2 will get your vote instead, hence your vote being counted more than once.

  7. Honestly, I really wanted AV. To me FPTP is just flawed, horribly, horribly flawed.
    At the moment, FPTP is ridiculous. It's a two-party system that only works in favour of either Labour or Conservatives. Political participation is minimised because people have sadly realised that it's either red or blue. The point of an election is pointless. Sure, Liberal Democrats have reached some form of power, but I find it actually impossible for a coalition to ever exist without the either of the two big parties.

    You know, even Conservatives and Labour have realised how flawed FPTP is, but neither of the parties are going to earnestly want to change the system. Why? Because at the moment there is a high chance that they'll stay in power election after election. You know, to elect a leader Conservatives actually use something similar to AV, I feel as though that says a lot by itself.

    I'm not crazy about AV, I'd actually rather see AMS used over here. But I'm certainly anti-FPTP. I think if we relied on a different voting system, politics in general might improve. I think once people can see that they wont be wasting a vote, it will actually encourage them. Of course, I realise I'm being hopelessly optimistic. I don't have that much faith when it comes to the next generation and politics.

    I'm 16, in college and I've only been doing Politics at AS for just over 2 months. I'd like to say in only 2 months I've realised just how broken FPTP is.