Category Archives: Accountability of Representatives

Parliamentary or Presidential?

With @TheresaMay2016‘s coronation we need an early General Election. The Tories now have no mandate. Britain deserves better than this.

The implication of this would seem to be that Tim Farron believes in a Presidential system. Which is strange given that the last time the Liberals were in Government they relied on a parliamentary majority to sustain them rather than a general election majority

Under presidential systems elections get boiled down to a binary choice – which probably means no look in for the Liberals.

Parliament is just as representative today as it was yesterday; problem (1) is
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Vote Swapping

There was an article on the BBC Website last week (23 April 2015 : Election 2015: Does ‘vote swapping’ work?) discussing the idea of vote swapping.

In vote swapping two people in different constituencies agree to trade votes in the hope that they can both have more influence on who forms the government.

Even though I intensely dislike the effect of our current First Past the Post¹ voting system, I feel uneasy about mechanisms such as these which “buck the system”. Continue reading

Manifestly Not in the Manifesto – so what?

Today the hot issue in the UK House of Commons today (5 February 2013) is the debate over the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill.

A lot of very heated debate including many accusations that “this was not in the manifesto.  Should the lack of even a mention in any manifesto necessarily bar our representatives voting on an issue? Continue reading

Boundary Reforms

The Conservatives are up in arms about the Liberals threatening to vote against boundary reforms and accusing the Liberals of hypocracy.

The Conservatives say that boundary reform is essential because it takes more voters to elect a Conservative MP than a Labour MP – this conveniently ignores just how many voters it takes to elect a Liberal MP.  I think I smell hypocracy.  They rejected electoral reform (which would solve this issue), by putting a poor system (AV) to a referendum and then campaigning against it.  Boundary Reform will give the Cons about 20 extra seats and possibly win them the next election.

The Liberals are opposing (having previously supported) because they say we should not reduce the number of elected legislators (MPs) by 50 given the loss of their proposals to reform the unelected Legislature (The Lords).  I think I smell tit-for-tat masquearading as “principal”.  Hypocracy?

The current proposals have faults that entirely justify their rejection.  The requirement to “equalise” constituency size to within a margin of 5% means: Continue reading