Monday, April 25, 2011

Tories Don't Elect Leader Using AV

The Yes campaign and Paddy Ashdown have repeatedly claimed that AV was used to elect David Cameron as leader of the Conservative Party. The Conservatives do not use AV for their leadership elections. Conservative MPs vote using the‘Exhaustive Ballot’ system – a series of separate run-off rounds, a crucial distinction which allows them to know who has been eliminated at each stage, and which candidates remain. MPs can only vote for one candidate, and vote using an ‘X’. The final round is a First Past the Post vote of all party members, who again vote for one candidate using an ‘X’. (Nor do the Labour Party use AV as it is being proposed in this referendum: they use an electoral college system, where union members, party members, and MPs each cast separate ranked ballots.)

See here for the other arguments.


  1. so why have one system for internal elections and one for the rest of us? its complete rubbish that it is too complicated, fptp means that I can't vote for someone that represents me, instead I have to vote for one of the 3 that have a chance of getting in that I dislike least. how's that fair?

  2. For fairness, ask why your second or third preference vote should have the same value as my first choice? 'One person, one vote, once' is a very fair system.

  3. Well, "why shouldn't they?" is a better question. It's not a fair system where the majority of people probably disagree with the final decision and people get elected with a minority of the votes.

  4. Richard Normington said "For fairness, ask why your second or third preference vote should have the same value as my first choice? 'One person, one vote, once' is a very fair system."

    Why in the east of England should Conservative have 1.3 millions votes with a return of 52 seats while Labour have 1.6 million votes and only 10 seats? What value is a labour or liberals (1.1 million and only 4 seats) vote to a conservatives? Surely the vote should be valued to as close to equal as possible but with FPTP it isnt.

    Since 1950 the turnout for the general election has dropped from nearly 85% right down to just 65%. The number of people who choose not to vote in a system they clearly dont believe in has risen from just 15% to more than double that at 35%! Consider the amount of people who actually want AV and how disenfranchised they will become if the referendum comes out as no. It will take hard work to prevent the next election having the lowest turnout in our history. FPTP will never again achieve the vote of the majority and its approaching the point where the true majority wont even vote at all. This is not an example of a working democratic system.

  5. It is unfair that the majority of seats are won by a minority of votes.

    If you decide on a film or restaurant with friends no one gives only one choice... it is always preferences.

  6. "A majority is always better than the best repartee."

    Benjamin Disraeli