I've voted Labour in every general election since I was eligible in 1992(at age 23 as I missed out by a few weeks in 1987!).
Yet, not once were Labour my first choice party, they were my second and sometimes my third choice. This has never been recorded at the ballot box. For all anyone knows, I might be die hard Labour because the one choice that first-past-the-post has given me has distorted my vote in a desperate attempt to try and make my vote count (my vote has never made a difference).
Desperate because I am trying like millions of other voters to guess what they are going to vote based on past results from years ago and movements in current opinion polls. AV does away with all this and allows you to vote for who you really like and rank the others in order (if you so choose).
Sadly, the latest opinion polls seem to suggest that the Yes vote is lost. We had our chance, but the Noes with their banker backing and control of most of the media were just too strong. We should have won, but there is little consolation.
David Cameron will make a gushing speech where he will say people have voted for first-past-the-post rather than to reject AV. Silver lining? This will slow the move to PR, but it might also makes a move to STV less likely and perhaps List PR will prevail in a referendum within a generation. Preference voting will have been rejected on May 5th. Still a referendum is unlikely to happen in my lifetime. It will be interesting to see what happens at the next election under first-past-the-post when the party in third place gets most seats. How will Cameron defend that?