It Is Time For A Fairer Voting System

It Is Time For Proportional Representation

By Office of Wera Hobhouse, Aug 07, 2018 1:08

The new All Party Parliamentary Group for Proportional Representation has been established to create the real reform needed to give voters a stronger voice. 

MPs from the Liberal Democrats, Labour, the Green Party, Plaid Cymru and the SNP have joined forces with the aim to push for the adoption of a system of proportional representation at all levels of governance in the UK. 

Wera Hobhouse MP, who is vice-chair of the group, stated that the first-past-the-post system "creates an adversarial political culture which does not allow for constructive discourse in which good decisions are made". She has long been a member of the Electoral Reform Society, championing the need for democratic reform in the UK. 

A survey of 2,000 voters commissioned by Make Votes Matter for National Democracy Week demonstrated that two-thirds of people surveyed believe the share of seats should match the share of votes whilst more than half wanted the outdated, first-past-the-post system replaced by proportional representation.

Darren Hughes, Chief Executive of the Electoral Reform Society said that "at last year’s General Election, 68% of votes had no impact on the result - going to either unsuccessful candidates or being beyond those required for a winning candidate to be successful." He went onto say that "the launch of this group (APPG) is an essential step in building alliances around this vital democratic change."

Wera added "Electoral reform is essential to create a better democracy in which we fully engage with all our citizens and allow them to participate." 

At the 2015 Local Council Elections for BANES, the Liberal Democrats secured 25% of the vote to contest 65 seats. If proportional representation has been used, 16 seats would have been won rather than the 15 using the current system. The conservatives with 37% would have secured 24 rather than the 37 they actually won. The use of this system would have more accurately reflected the demographic of Bath and its political make up.

Wera said: "We need a system which truly reflects the political makeup of this country and restores faith in the electorate that their vote actually matters."

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