The alternative vote

Discussion in 'Current Affairs' started by Flagdeck, Mar 29, 2011.

Welcome to the Navy Net aka Rum Ration

The UK's largest and busiest UNofficial RN website.

The heart of the site is the forum area, including:

  1. May 5th the country has the opportunity to vote for an alternative voting system.
    Is first past the post still relevent in the 21st century ? or should we embrace the alternative vote, where minority parties like, UKIP, or BNP or even Monster Raving Loonies could be sitting in parliament. (Some would argue that the raving loonies are already there)
  2. I'd say the first past the post with the most votes should be the only winner, yet the current coalition Govt shows that sometimes things go hiccup. I dont thing the AV proposal is right for the country however in my opinion. Thread might spark some interesting debate hopefully
  3. I am for it as it would mean that all elected MP’s would have the support of a majority of their voters, it should also penalise extremist parties as they would be unlikely to gain many second preference votes. It would also mean that we would never again be subjected to an un-elected coalition.
  4. Personally I'd like to see a more proportional system such as the single transferable vote (STV), but I will vote 'Yes' to AV, for the reason that if we get a 'no' vote the chances of any further changes to our voting system will be put on a back burner forever. AV is not perfect but FPTP only really works well in a 2 party system.
    If the country votes 'yes' on AV then I hope more pressure can be brought to bear for further changes to a much more proportional system in future years. I really believe this may be a once in a lifetime opportunity to start to change our voting system, as I say AV is not my preferred choice, but change has to start somewhere.
  5. Given the Great British public are confused by first past the post and struggle to put an X into a box, I dread to think how they would manage AV.
  6. Precisely why I suspect AV might not be best for the UK. As lets face it, theres an increasing population of plonkers scared of Muslim ray guns.

    Too much risk of a marginal extreme gaining some form of power
  7. The thing that some people don't seem to grasp with AV is that if they only want to vote for one candidate they still can, they don't have to rank them in preference if they only like one candidate. However if they do have a second, third fourth etc preference then they can rank them as such.
  8. I'm in favour of AV for the reasons Fink has given. If I had a choice I'd go for the list system as it keeps both the one person one vote principle while addressing the portionality arguement. The only thing it doesn't offer is the accountability to a constituency but that could be sorted with the addition of a post election draw to allocate MPs to constituencies.
  9. As I understand it, AV would mean more chance of a coalition government, not less... not to mention the theory that, as AV rewards parties for being uncontroversial (as a more attractive second/third preference), it would encourage the parties to become more centrist and less distinct.

    Then again, I tend towards Voltaire's view that "The best government is tyranny tempered by the occasional assassination"
  10. Not for me. I shall vote for the "No" campaign. I am old enough to have watched Lord Such, the Cowboy(?) and other assorted clowns (Griffin) run for office over the years. I have also watched what was my preferred party become hobbled by a coalition. I firmly believe that we need strong government, whoever wins, and not, what would probably become a "a stroke and Joke parliament".
  11. janner

    janner War Hero Book Reviewer

    I shall be voting No, I like to see who is likely to be my MP rather that have some Party Hack appointed to an area he/she has no knowledge of
  12. I see a variety of issues with AV. Firstly we live in Conflict Political System, not a Consensus System. Hence Coalitions do not work well. AV will cause this more often, thus potentially creating a sitting duck situation for the Government. In the long term in reality it also means a greater centralisation of our main political parties; this in turn leading to a fringe vacuum and more extreme parties being formed.

    As already mentioned there is more possibility for parties such as BNP, EDL ect. This happens as the system is more ‘proportional’ but is also down to the lack us understanding of a comparatively complicated system. Studies have shown that the majority of people beyond vote 3, don’t actually know who they are voting for so they just put the numbers in the boxes. Also people don’t know they don’t have to rank all members but at the same time you are for fitting you voting right and then if you only mark 1; you then have a MP who will get into the position without true support and without a mandate.

    They say the AV system makes a stronger MP-constituent link. This is true as with AV the MP will be voted for by everyone, be it on 3rd, 4th or 5th votes. It can be argued though that on this principle that if you get into the position on the 3rd or 4th vote, you have lost the mandate to represent as the majority of your votes are not from the people that actually wanted you.

    I understand most of the voting systems but I feel that none other than FPTP truly operates in a conflict system. If we were going to move to AV it would take a long time before it actually worked within our political climate. This would damage the country as we would have slow progression on the global front as the political parties jostle to adjust and the nation adjusts to the idea of 3, 4 or even 5 party governments. Can you say they have a clear mandate to power? I personally don’t think so.

    Finally our electoral turnout has declined steadily since the early 1990 and has only recently recovered to over 60% of the able voters. AV is likely to disengage the electorate due to the ‘complicated’ system and a lack of direct connection with the elected MP.

    Food for thought
  13. Whilst AV is not as good (up for debate ..) as PV it is a step in the right direction as Stoker42 has said previously. Who cares if certain "fringe" elements of politics get into the current three headed monster that is passing itself off as a democratic Parliament; which is under the jackboot of the EUSSR anyway - but that is another debate. If I were to be able to vote I'd join the Man from Delmonte.

    If other parties start to get more voice then so much the better.

    It is called democracy - the result would be more akin to what the people want. Irrespective of what the current political elite think that they should have. No wonder certain elements are running scared.

    Roll on the GreenMonsterRavingBNP coalition. ~ If you're not a green coloured Morris man then the UK isn't for you :)
  14. Can you explain for me how AV would be likely to bring power for fringe parties? I don't see it. Even the "no" campaign website doesn't flag it as an issue.

    I don't understand your point. What has AV got to do with appointing party hacks? Are you confusing it with a list based PR system?
  15. Many people in this country are sceptical of futher European integration, a national newspaper is campaigning for a referendum on EU membership and appears to have great support. UKIP came second in the Barnsley by election recently, beating Cons and LibDems.
    If AV is accepted, UKIP could/would gain seats in parliament which would further their agenda for EU withdrawl. This would, I believe, serve as a wake up call for the mainstream parties who would have to start 'listening' to the electorate. For this reason alone, I would vote for a YES to AV.
  16. Of course, having voted for it to make a point to prod the politicos with, you would then be stuck with it.

    I'm delaying my departure an holiday that morning to vote "no; sod off, stop trying to mend things that aren't really broken".
  17. Not necessarily - see yesterday's BBC Radio 5 Live experiment in Brentford and Isleworth. If enough people don't put a second preference, then the small minority that do REALLY skew the eventual outcome....

    Also, the Labour majorities in 1997 and 2001 would have been even larger - talk about elective dictatorships, you'd be pushing for pretty much one party rule....

    I'm also not sure about the accuracy of your final sentence - if people genuinely haven't got a clue about how the voting in their constituency is going to pan out, then that increases the temptation to vote tactically rather than actually for what you believe in, and could end up with a parliamentary make-up that no-one has voted for.
    Last edited: Mar 31, 2011
  18. AV is being flogged to us as some ind of modern whizzbang system to try and drag UK elctions kicking and screaming into the 21st Century.A perusal of Wikipedia at Instant-runoff voting - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia reveals that although it is used in the US and Australia for theeir version of local elections thee are only two sovereign nations that actually use it for Parliamentary Elections.Step foreward Papua New Guinea and Fiji and one of those is reportedly thinking of ditching it.I am not expecting any members of the Yes campaign to try and fully explain how it all works as eyes will quickly glaze over.First past the post aint perfect but it has got to be better than what's being offered here.
  19. Yes and the country that wants to ditch AV is the one that overthrew it's duly elected government with a military coup, installed an unelected head of state and HE wants to get rid of AV. I wonder why? :lol:
  20. Just because it's different doesn't make it better. I fear many will vote for it thinking that everything will change. In reality it will just make a mess of parliamentary elections in that there will be more minority parties elected, therefore less votes to mainstream parties. This will mean coalitions will become the soup du jour and you only need to look at the Lib Dems to see what happens to a party's manifesto when it enters a coalition.

    There's a reason hardly any other countries use it as a (main) voting system.

Share This Page