21 February 2007

'First past the post' ensures Lords Reform stalemate.

This is the perfect example of how preference voting gets things done while our current electoral system leads to stalemate.

Jack Straw has backtracked on using the Alternative Vote for deciding Lords Reform after objections from MPs (mostly those who want to see stalemate) that it breaks with tradition.

Tradition is one of the favourite conservative arguments for keeping the status quo and it looks like once again it will keep an unjust system from the badly needed reform it requires. Like previous attempts at reform this one is doomed to gridlock under the 'aye' and 'nay' system despite most MPs preferring a second chamber that is majority elected.


  1. You make little attempt at impartiality. But I guess for the sake of a good blog, you have one.

    A seal of approval.

  2. The voting system for making law MUST have a "none of the above" option. Surely only the most blinkered Labour groupie could fail to see that.

    Oh hang on...

  3. Only a minority wanted to keep the Lords as it is, yet because of the voting system that is exactly what we got and it will now happen again.

    I am not going to call you a bigoted Tory, but anyone who argues for the current electoral system is arguing to keep a very rotten system. If we want to really improve this country we need PR.

  4. The question of PR and the question of how the elected representatives conduct their votes aren't the same.

    The argument for PR in the general election is much stronger than the argument for some kind of transferrable vote in the making of law. For government to pass new laws (which is in most cases to place additional constraints on the liberties of the people) is a weighty step, and I consider it a good thing that a majority of voting MPs have to stand up and say that, yes, the proposed bill is a good law.

    Some kind of transferrable vote (and for the record, if you choose something that isn't Condorcet with Ranked Pairs, you're wrong) is a good way for establishing the best compromise decision.

    Forcing a hasty compromise isn't the way to get the best law, though.