Wednesday, 27 April 2011

The Alternative Vote will be wrong for Britain

I joined opponents of a change in the voting system last weekend who held a street stall in Ashton Town Centre.

The street stall was held as it emerged that leading Labour figures across the Borough are backing a No vote in the referendum on Thursday, 5th May.

Cabinet members Kevin Anderson, Fred Walker and Sue Loudon are joined by Cllrs Terry Halliwell,  Myra Whiteside, Jim Talbot, Emma McGurrin, Jim Churton, Ann Rampling and Nigel Ash in supporting a No vote on Thursday, 5th May.

This is an important referendum – changing the voting system is not something we should do lightly. It could have all sorts of unintended consequences.

There is a very simple principle in politics and governments – whoever gets the most votes wins. It’s wrong that the person who came second or third can overtake the person with the most votes and be allowed to win because the second and third choices of the minor parties are counted again. Imagine applying the same principle at the Olympic Games and giving the gold medal to the person who came in third!

Ashton Ward Councillor, Nigel Ash said, “The Alternative Vote system is much more likely to produce
a hung parliament and the need for a coalition government. And coalition governments aren’t always the strongest. First of all it takes ages to do the deals between the parties, with politicians horse-trading behind closed doors – remember May last year.

“Because politicians make these secret deals after the election, it means that any promises they made during the campaign are thrown out of the window. Just look at what Nick Clegg and the Liberal Democrats have done on tuition fees to get a flavour. And we’re left with the crazy situation where it’s the politicians who choose who forms the government, and what policies they keep or ditch, not the voters, and that has to be wrong.”

Over 100 Labour MPs and Peers have pledged to vote No including John Prescott, Margaret Beckett MP, John Reid and Shadow Health Secretary John Healey MP.

For more info on the No2AV campaign click here.     

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