19 June 2009

Euro Results By Local Authority

hat-tip - Luke Akehurst, who links to these results (pdf).

They make interesting reading and it is pretty grim news for those of us in the Labour party and those of us who want to stop David Cameron and his posh Tory friends stealing the country back on a minority of the vote.

Under first-past-the-post, even on a dismal 27.7% of the vote, the Tories would take an unbelievable 70% of the seats on these results. What a crap system we have to elect our MPs.

Under first-past-the-post, UKIP might not have got any MEPs despite beating Labour into second place.

SIX million votes would be wasted and elect no MEPs, yet 4.1 million for the Tories would give them 70% of MEPs. Once again, what a crap system first-past-the-post is.

Yes, that six million does include the million people who voted for the BNP. I know a lot of people think democracy should be sacrificed to keep them out, but the truth of the matter is that the BNP vote grows under fptp.

In recent years, over SEVENTY representatives for the BNP have been elected by fptp, just 3 by PR (2 MEPs and 1 GLA member). For the first time the BNP won seats on a county council, but no-one blamed the first-past-the-post system that put them there. The real problem is that a million people felt it acceptable to vote for fascists, not that they got 2 MEPs under PR.

Of course voters are unlikely to vote for UKIP and the Greens in their millions in the general election because they know their vote will be wasted under first-past-the-post. Yes, some have changed their vote purely on European issues and the turn-out was low as always for these elections, but this proportional election does give a real feel for how people would like to vote in a general election if given the chance - 56% rejected both Labour and the Tories.

Just 18% of our MEPs were women in 1999 under first-past-the-post, under PR the figure is now 36%.

The Greens were top in 3 local authorities - Brighton&Hove (31%), Norwich (25%) and Oxford (26%). They also got 23% in Hackney, Islington (20%), Lambeth, Camden, Cambridge and Lewisham (18%) and 15% or over in Stroud, Bristol, Reading, Canterbury.

Under first-past-the-post, the Greens might take one seat (in Brighton Pavilion) at a general election with these results. Under PR they would get around 60 MPs - similar to what the Lib Dems have now. UKIP would get no MPs under FPTP, but over a 100 MPs under PR.

To stop the BNP we need to beat their arguments not gerrymander them under the carpet for their views and supporters to fester and grow.

3 comments:

  1. Good point on the BNP wining seats under FPTP, but being ruthlessly fair about this, there are about twenty thousand local councillors across the UK (or is it forty thousand?).

    Seventy out of twenty thousand is a meaninglessly small percentage, as against two MEPs out of seventy-two, which is quite big.

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  2. There are about 1,500 county councillors and 3 of them are now BNP. Less than 1% admittedly and the BNP with 2 MEPs got 2.5% of Euro seats. The point here is that, fptp is ignoring millions of people who vote Green and UKIP and others who deserve to be represented AND it still isn't preventing the fascists get a few seats. Ok not as many as they would get under the most proportional systems (fascists find it more difficult to get elected under STV than FPTP).

    Two of the countries that are having the biggest problems with the far right are the UK and France - neither of which use proportional systems. The BNP are official opposition in Stoke and Dagenham - a whisker away from gaining control of 2 councils. That couldn't happen under PR unless they got over 50% of the vote. The BNP could take a council under FPTP with as little as 20%.

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  3. I also want to make the point that the Tory press fuels fascism and discontent to try and dissuade working class people from voting Labour. Only under FPTP is this a tactic that would help the Tories. Under PR the Tory press would have to persuade people to vote Tory for POSITIVE reasons because only an increase in the Tory vote would get them more seats, splitting the opposition wouldn't help the Tories win seats.

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