1 May 2011

AV wont cost more

Here is the letter I sent to Stroud Life last week which I hope might correct the editorial that suggested AV costs more:

Stroud Life asks 'What's price of democracy with alternative vote?' Your editorial rightly identifies that AV is about improving our democracy, but you suggest it might be costly (27.0.11). It is true that the NO to AV campaign has made their key message 'the costs of AV', however their claims can be demolished with the slightest scrutiny. Indeed a recent Treasury estimate put the cost of an election under AV as roughly the same as under a normal General Election.

Our current election rules were designed for a different age when 95% of us voted for two main parties. At the last election this fell to 65% and more than two-thirds of MPs were elected with fewer than 50% of the vote. Too many MPs think that they have a job for life. Half of all seats have been in the same party’s control since 1970. This can breed complacency and arrogance.

Our voting system is not coping with the challenges of our times. MP's should have a majority of the voters in their constituency behind them. AV gives that and more power to individual voters. It’s not complicated. It’s as easy as 1, 2, 3. This is our chance for electoral and political reform. Vote YES to AV on Thursday.

Cllr Philip Booth, Stroud District councillor for Randwick, Whiteshill and Ruscombe ward (Green Party)

See more here about why we need a yes vote.


Anonymous said...

Hi there

what happens if I do not wish to rank candidates and only vote for my first choice?

My vote therefore carries less weight than other people's votes and that seems wrong to me.

Anonymous said...

AV gives you the freedom to vote sincerely for any number of candidates you feel are up to the job.

As the last comment notes you aren’t forced to vote for any candidate you don’t want. If you only want to support one candidate you can. Just mark an ‘X’ as you did before.

The difference is that AV gives you a vote that really counts and more of a say on who your local MP is. If your first choice gets knocked out your vote is transferred to your second preference. Whether you just vote 1 for your favourite candidate or list a preference for every candidate on the ballot only one vote will be counted.

If you go to the chip shop, and order cod and chips but they are out of cod, and you choose pie and chips instead, you have still only had one meal.

Anonymous said...

AV ensures a winning candidate has to work harder and go further to secure support from a majority. That’s what’s needed to be ‘best’, and may explain why politicians are so keen on AV when electing their own…

When Hollywood recently dumped First Past the Post for AV, they didn’t change the wording on the statuette to Academy Award for Least Worst Picture. They wanted a ‘Best Picture’ winner that could deliver on that promise.

Anonymous said...

See cats telling us re AV:

Anonymous said...

Well, that's not truly answered my question.

If I only vote for ONE candidate, it does mean that although my vote is only 'counted' once, any further preferences I could have stated will not be taken into account - unlike other people who rank several candidates.

If a person ranking candidates sees their first choice is out in the first round, then their second choice comes into play. Mine (I don't have one) would not and there is the disadvantage allowing some to have more influence (if not 'votes') over the outcome.

Andy said...

Try this:

Although the last line is nonsense!