The need for electoral reform

imagesNRS7YS98In the context of a change to the way in which Labour in particular and Westminster more broadly is being impacted by the election of Jeremy Corbyn, its important that changing a few deckchairs does not allow commentators to assume all is and will be rosy when the change (whatever it really represents) beds in. An organisation called IPPR has just published a sobering report on the failings of our electoral system. In particular the report analyses voting patterns in 2015 compared to in 1987. It is clear that younger voters are failing to turn out to vote in much lower numbers than was the case in 1987. There is also an indication that people of more advantaged  social classes are much more likely to vote than those who do not have the advantages. The impact of many more credible political parties than was the case previously has led to a much more substantial difference between the number of votes that certain parties need to gain a seat than those that others do. An MP for the DUP in Northern Ireland will have been elected with an average 23,033 votes and SNP in Scotland 25,972 votes. The Conservative Party MPs have been elected with an average 34,244 votes and Labour an average 40,290. The Lib Dems need more than 300,000 votes, Greens more than 1M and UKIP nearly 4M. These figures reflect a number of factors but they show that our nation and its voters do not have equal access to representation in any sense other than the crudest idea that all of us are entitled to vote in regular elections. Whilst Jeremy Corbyn is upsetting his own party and potentially the other major parties in Westminster, there is a need for all of us to express our disquiet with a system that is deeply flawed and needs a radical overhaul.


About ianchisnall

I have a passion to see public policy made accessible everyone who want to improve the wellbeing of their communities. I am interested in issues related to crime and policing as well as in policies on health services and strategic planning.
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