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What hope of consensus under PR, some people should beware of getting what they wish for


just john
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http://andymcsmith.independentminds.livejournal.com/5378.html

''In a fully proportionate system, by my calculation, the Lib Dems would now have 150 MPs, instead of 57, UKIP 20, BNP 11, and the Green Party 6.

Arithmetic like this would make sure that the UK was forever ruled by coalition governments, in which the Prime Minister comes from one of the two main parties, as before, but with the difference that the Lib Dems would always be in office, no matter what. And on the opposition benches there would be a merry score of eccentrics led by Nigel Farage, and a dozen or so hard rock racists led by Nick Griffin.

Some people should beware of getting what they wish for''

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I'd be a very happy bunny if someone could please explain in plain English and as few words as possible  how PR actually works. As for the comment about hard rock racists does that include the SNP, the Northern Irish and the Welsh contingent, who at this moment are trying to blackmail the Liberals and the Labour party. [:D]
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There are several systems of PR. A great many countries - including France - use some form of PR for at least some elections.

This site explains the main methods reasonably clearly. For some reason many of the people who seem to mistrust it and cannot see how it can result in stable government are the same ones who point to how well countries like Germany do in comparison with the British government. Germany has had mostly coalitions elected under PR for 60 years or more. Likewise the alliances in France, and the governments in Ireland, The Netherlands, and the Scandinavian countries. They seem to have worked less well in Belgium and Italy.

The Electoral Reform Society favours the single transferable vote system, so its explanation is a bit biased, but it's a good site for learning more about PR: http://www.electoral-reform.org.uk/

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Thanks for the links Will, but as much I have tried to digest the information I'm still confused. There just seems to be too many options, which makes me distrust PR. I've always been a supporter of the old adage one man one vote. At the minute it is being discussed in the |UK but it only appears to suit the Liberals. I'll bet if the Libs had a large majority they wouldn't want PR. Also as the original poster said would you want the BNP to have more seats? That scary scenario alone is good enough to make me think we should stick with the system we already have.
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[quote user="NickP"]Thanks for the links Will, but as much I have tried to digest the information I'm still confused. There just seems to be too many options, which makes me distrust PR. I've always been a supporter of the old adage one man one vote. At the minute it is being discussed in the |UK but it only appears to suit the Liberals. I'll bet if the Libs had a large majority they wouldn't want PR. Also as the original poster said would you want the BNP to have more seats? That scary scenario alone is good enough to make me think we should stick with the system we already have.[/quote]

Strange seeing the UK has had PR since 1999 but a perusal of the Preamble to the European Parliamentary Elections Act 1999 affords a clear and concise explanation. http://www.opsi.gov.uk/acts/acts1999/ukpga_19990001_en_1

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[quote user="pachapapa"]

[quote user="NickP"]Thanks for the links Will, but as much I have tried to digest the information I'm still confused. There just seems to be too many options, which makes me distrust PR. I've always been a supporter of the old adage one man one vote. At the minute it is being discussed in the |UK but it only appears to suit the Liberals. I'll bet if the Libs had a large majority they wouldn't want PR. Also as the original poster said would you want the BNP to have more seats? That scary scenario alone is good enough to make me think we should stick with the system we already have.[/quote]

Strange seeing the UK has had PR since 1999 but a perusal of the Preamble to the European Parliamentary Elections Act 1999 affords a clear and concise explanation. http://www.opsi.gov.uk/acts/acts1999/ukpga_19990001_en_1

[/quote]

If you think that is clear and concise, your 'aving a larf. [:D]

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[quote user="just john "]

''In a fully proportionate system, by my calculation, the Lib Dems would now have 150 MPs, instead of 57, UKIP 20, BNP 11, and the Green Party 6.

Arithmetic like this would make sure that the UK was forever ruled by coalition governments, in which the Prime Minister comes from one of the two main parties, as before, but with the difference that the Lib Dems would always be in office, no matter what. And on the opposition benches there would be a merry score of eccentrics led by Nigel Farage, and a dozen or so hard rock racists led by Nick Griffin.

Some people should beware of getting what they wish for''

[/quote]

Isn't this what democracy is meant to be ? Just because you don't like these parties why should the hundreds of thousands who vote for them get no representation ? And why should there forever be coalitions ? If one party can propose an overwhelmingly attractive manifesto then they should get 50%+ of the votes. Bring it on I say and I suspect a lot of people who feel safe voting for a minor party as a protest won't do so under PR - they can actually vote for who they like for once.

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