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Richard Clegg

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The PM program [May. 10th, 2010|02:43 pm]
Richard Clegg
I'm trying to work but I'm mainly just pressing refresh on the BBC website to see if we have a government yet. Well the result could have been worse but not much. A Lib-Conservative pact would look like a total disaster to me with eroded Lib Dem support (how many people are already "never lib dem again" even before this), not much chance of any actual electoral reform and a very small number of LD MPs trying to claim they are "influencing" policy. Also is it really likely that any kind of electoral reform bill would get through given I reckon many tories would defy the party whip on such a matter. In a way the nicest possible result would be a minority Tory government which would quickly turn in on itself as the Tory party typical habit of eating its young in times of stress. What are the rest of you hoping/fearing from this?
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Comments:
[User Picture]From: andrewducker
2010-05-10 01:47 pm (UTC)
This is all you need to refresh:
http://havethetoriesformedagovernmentyet.com/

I don't care what happens so long as we get electoral reform. If the LibDems can't get that through then they shouldn't be in a coalition with anyone. A minority Conservative government would be my secondary choice at the moment, as they'd be forced to actually talk to other parties and pass laws that include compromise...

Part of me would like to see them tear themselves apart, but I'd actually be happier with political parties that learned how to work with each other. And a unicorn. I'd really like a unicorn.

Edited at 2010-05-10 01:48 pm (UTC)
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[User Picture]From: steer
2010-05-10 01:57 pm (UTC)

I don't care what happens so long as we get electoral reform.


It's well below, say, the economy, housing policy, education, health care, the tax system, the banking system, immigration, foreign policy and... many other things... on my list of priorities.

If the LibDems can't get that through then they shouldn't be in a coalition with anyone.

If they team up with the tories they might well lose so many votes they'll wish there was FPTP again. I don't see a Lib/Tory coalition getting it voted through in any case. You would only need 40 or so Tory rebels for it to fail and most tory candidates hate anything other than FPTP.
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[User Picture]From: andrewducker
2010-05-10 02:00 pm (UTC)
Depends on how many Labour MPs would go for PR in addition.

Personally, I think that if we take the long view then fixing democracy will leave us with better outcomes in ten years than fixing pretty anything else will. In the short term you're probably right.
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[User Picture]From: steer
2010-05-10 02:15 pm (UTC)
LJ is being weird today and deleted your reply temporarily. I think it *is* important but I don't like pure PR (can get list of faceless party drones who always follow the whip rather than committed MPs). Lots of places in Europe plus scotland and wales (IIRC) have different electoral systems for their elections and I don't see huge public rejoicing at the wonderfulness of their system. It's better and less absurd than FPTP but I think the actual practical differences appear to me appear quite minimal.
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[User Picture]From: andrewducker
2010-05-10 02:18 pm (UTC)
Additional Member (what we have in Scotland) can produce a bunch of faceless drones, as the lists are defined at a party level. STV tends to do the opposite, as you have a choice of representatives from each party at local level, and can rank them in any order you like.
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[User Picture]From: steer
2010-05-10 02:40 pm (UTC)
Yes but STV implemented at the local level is not *that* much different to FPTP and you could still get exactly the same sort of 30% of the votes 5% of the seats stuff -- indeed in an extreme case it would be the same. Indeed I think the Electoral Reform Soc published something today showing that the STV version of our election would not be too different in its results.

I guess we always have to think about Arrow's Impossibility Theorem and similar... we can never have a perfect electoral system though a less broken one would be nice.
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[User Picture]From: andrewducker
2010-05-10 02:48 pm (UTC)
It's unlikely to be the same as FPTP in a multimember constituency - it certainly takes away problems like the one that happened in Oxford West. If you have 3 seats going then 30% of the vote should definitely get you one of them. I'm sure it _can_ produce massively odd results, but I think you'd have to try harder than you do with FPTP.
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[User Picture]From: steer
2010-05-10 02:53 pm (UTC)
For interest here's the electoral reform "STV" and "AV" versus "FPTP" for this election. Note that AV appears almost indistinguishable to me.


http://www.electoral-reform.org.uk/news.php?ex=0&nid=469
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[User Picture]From: andrewducker
2010-05-10 09:57 pm (UTC)
Yeah - AV is a better system than pure FPTP, but doesn't produce as proportional a result as STV, which doesn't produce as proportional a vote as AMS.

I'm (not) looking forward to the debates with ordinary people about this stuff...
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[User Picture]From: childeric
2010-05-10 02:38 pm (UTC)
I'm not enormously keen on pure PR either. The Alternative Vote Plus system that Roy Jenkins advocated in 1998 seems at least worth a thought, though. It has its flaws, of course, but it's a candidate for least worst IMHO.
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[User Picture]From: wehmuth
2010-05-10 02:05 pm (UTC)
[electoral reform] is well below [...] on my list of priorities.

I think that's probably true for many people.  On the other hand, I don't think that stability will be achieved until the cycle of two alternating 'extremes' is reduced in effect.  Whether or not this will lead to improved politics, accountability and sensible policies is another matter.
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[User Picture]From: steer
2010-05-10 02:17 pm (UTC)
I really wonder how we could move to a more consensus system of politics in this country.
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[User Picture]From: wehmuth
2010-05-10 04:09 pm (UTC)
If the consensus is driven by Murdoch, do we want to? ;-)
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[User Picture]From: moral_vacuum
2010-05-11 04:55 pm (UTC)
I think it would involve wholesale lobotomies.
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