Saturday, September 25, 2010

Lib Dems Crash

The Lib Dems suffered a crushing defeat in Thursday's District Council By-election in the Gosforth Valley Ward of the North East Derbyshire District Council. It had been their stongest Ward. It is where I live.

In this three seater in 2007 the average results of the Political Parties were Lib Dems 51.1%, Tories 30.0% and Labour 18.9%.

The By-election was a contest for a single seat. The Liberal Vote fell dramatically to 31.3%, the Tories took 37.1% and Labour moved into second place with 31.6%.

The Liberal percentage vote fell by 19.8% with 7.1% of these going to the Tories and 12.7% to Labour. The Liberal swing to Labour was almost twice as strong as the swing to the Tories.

Although the turnout dropped substantially from 36% in 2007 to 26%, the Labour vote actually increased from a previous average of 315 to 354. It was its best ever result in the ward.

Whilst Labour only moved into 2nd place by 4 votes, it overtook the Lib Dems who had had an average lead over them of no less than 563 in 2007.

If the By-election had been fought under the Alternative Vote, then the Lib Dems would have been eliminated and their second choices redistributed between Labour and the Tories. Labour would have needed just 207 of the potential 350 transferred votes to ensure victory. That is under 3 in 5 of the transfers.

2 comments:

dave said...

This is a good article, thanks for posting - it shows what would have truly happened if we have AV.

I've read a lot of rubbish from the no campaign recently. They know the truth- AV will give us as a population more power and to this end they are going to spend millions to spread mis-information and lies about AV.
have a look at http://www.electoral-reform.org.uk/ - a great site full of facts and figures.

All of this information below is supportable by history , statistical analysis and logical deduction. This is copied from the ERS website

The case for AV

* All MPs would have the support of a majority of their constituents. Following the 2010 election 2/3 of MPs lacked majority support, the highest figure in British political history.
* It retains the same constituencies, meaning no need to redraw boundaries, and no overt erosion of the constituency-MP link.
* It more accurately reflects public opinion of extremist parties, who are unlikely to gain many second-preference votes.
* Coalition governments are no more likely to arise under AV than under First-Past-the-Post.
* It eliminates the need for tactical voting. Electors can vote for their first-choice candidate without fear of wasting their vote.
* It encourages candidates to chase second- and third-preferences, which lessens the need for negative campaigning (one doesn't want to alienate the supporters of another candidate whose second preferences one wants) and rewards broad-church policies.

Arguments used against FPTP

* Representatives can get elected on tiny amounts of public support. In 2005, for example, George Galloway polled the votes of only 18.4 per cent of his constituents, yet ended up in the House of Commons. Only three MPs elected in 2005 secured the votes of more than 40 per cent of their constituents.
* It encourages tactical voting, as voters vote not for the candidate they most prefer, but against the candidate they most dislike.
* FPTP in effect wastes huge numbers of votes, as votes cast in a constituency for losing candidates, or for the winning candidate above the level they need to win that seat, count for nothing. In 2005, 70 per cent of votes were wasted in this way – that's over 19 million ballots.
* With relatively small constituency sizes, the way boundaries are drawn can have important effects on the election result, which encourages attempts at gerrymandering.
* Small constituencies also lead to a proliferation of safe seats, where the same party is all but guaranteed re-election at each election. This not only in effect disenfranchises a region's voters, but it leads to these areas being ignored when it comes to framing policy.
* FPTP rewards organised minorities, deals ineffectively with the most disliked parties, ignores (and thus fails to deal with) views that don't look like challenging at the polls and can make certain areas feel neglected by the big political parties. Until 2009 Euro Elections it was the only electoral system in the UK to have elected representatives from extremist parties. A party can be despised by 49 per cent of an electorate and still win.
* Encouraging two-party politics can be an advantage, but in a multi-party culture, third parties with significant support can be greatly disadvantaged. In the 1983 general election, the Liberal SDP alliance won 25 of the vote, but gained only 3 per cent of the seats.

PS if anyone wants to join the local yes for fairer votes (full of normal everyday people who want to make our votes count for more) please e-mail me and I'll get back to you with some information. Please add the following lines together for my e-mail account which I've fragmented to avoid automatic spammers

davethawley
@yahoo.co.uk

PS Ed - if you want a balanced article from a local guy please e-mail me and I'll get back to you

dave said...

This is a good article, thanks for posting - it shows what would have truly happened if we have AV.

I've read a lot of rubbish from the no campaign recently. They know the truth- AV will give us as a population more power and to this end they are going to spend millions to spread mis-information and lies about AV.

Please go to a politically neutral site and find out the truth e.g http://www.electoral-reform.org.uk/ - a great site full of facts and figures.

All of this information below is supportable by history , statistical analysis and logical deduction. This is copied from the ERS website

The case for AV

* All MPs would have the support of a majority of their constituents. Following the 2010 election 2/3 of MPs lacked majority support, the highest figure in British political history.
* It retains the same constituencies, meaning no need to redraw boundaries, and no overt erosion of the constituency-MP link.
* It more accurately reflects public opinion of extremist parties, who are unlikely to gain many second-preference votes.
* Coalition governments are no more likely to arise under AV than under First-Past-the-Post.
* It eliminates the need for tactical voting. Electors can vote for their first-choice candidate without fear of wasting their vote.
* It encourages candidates to chase second- and third-preferences, which lessens the need for negative campaigning (one doesn't want to alienate the supporters of another candidate whose second preferences one wants) and rewards broad-church policies.

Arguments used against FPTP

* Representatives can get elected on tiny amounts of public support. In 2005, for example, George Galloway polled the votes of only 18.4 per cent of his constituents, yet ended up in the House of Commons. Only three MPs elected in 2005 secured the votes of more than 40 per cent of their constituents.
* It encourages tactical voting
* FPTP in effect wastes huge numbers of votes
* With relatively small constituency sizes, the way boundaries are drawn can have important effects on the election result, which encourages attempts at gerrymandering.
* Small constituencies also lead to a proliferation of safe seats, where the same party is all but guaranteed re-election at each election.
* If large areas of the country are electoral deserts for a particular party, not only is the area ignored by that party, but also ambitious politicians from the area have to move away from their homeland if they want to have influence within their party.
* FPTP rewards organised minorities, deals ineffectively with the most disliked parties, ignores (and thus fails to deal with) views that don't look like challenging at the polls and can make certain areas feel neglected by the big political parties. Until 2009 Euro Elections it was the only electoral system in the UK to have elected representatives from extremist parties. A party can be despised by 49 per cent of an electorate and still win.
* Encouraging two-party politics can be an advantage, but in a multi-party culture, third parties with significant support can be greatly disadvantaged. In the 1983 general election, the Liberal SDP alliance won 25 of the vote, but gained only 3 per cent of the seats.
* Because FPTP restricts a constituency's choice of candidates, representation of minorities and women suffers from 'most broadly acceptable candidate syndrome', where the 'safest' looking candidate is the most likely to be offered a chance to stand for election.





PS if anyone wants to join the local yes for fairer votes (full of normal everyday people who want to make our votes count for more) please e-mail me and I'll get back to you with some information. Please add the following lines together for my e-mail account which I've fragmented to avoid automatic spammers

davethawley
@yahoo.co.uk

PS Ed - if you want a balanced article from a local guy please e-mail me and I'll get back to you