A quick note about what a PR system would have meant on Thursday night.
Yes – electoral reform is on the cards. I blogged about this a week or so ago, and whilst it is a fair system, it does have caveats, albeit small ones.
So, going by figures on the BBC news website – these are the rough distribution of seats if PR had been applied to thursdays results:
|Proportion of Vote (%)||PR SEATS||FPTP Seats||Difference|
|Democratic Unionist Party||0.6||4||8||-4|
|Scottish National Party||1.7||11||6||5|
|Social Democratic & Labour Party||0.4||3||3||0|
|UK Independence Party||3.1||20||0||20|
|British National Party||1.9||12||0||12|
|Ulster Conservatives and Unionists – New Force||0.3||2||0||2|
|Traditional Unionist Voice||0.1||1||0||1|
|Independent Community and Health Concern||0.1||1||0||1|
Note) – numbers don’t completely add up due to lack of info on smaller parties and a missing seat.
So – we can see that the Lib Dems do really well, as do the smaller fringe parties. This is at the expense of the major two parties, which is exactly what we’d expect — given that’s what the electorate voted for!
Proportional Representation is fair – but fair in the UK means that the BNP may get 12 seats, and UKIP may get 20 seats. Greens may get 6.
All this assumes that in the PR system the UK will hopefully adopt, no ‘margin’ (a threshold of the vote that a party has to get to to ensure it gets representation) is imposed. A threshold set at 2% would exclude the BNP, but also parties that currently have seats, and might expect to retain representation, particularly the Northern Irish, Scottish and Welsh national parties.
Anyway, if PR becomes a reality – we must be prepared to expect something like this. Just an FYI.
EDIT: Since I published this the electoral commission have done a more rigorous analysis of the May 6th Vote.