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So what happened to the electoral system in 2010? John Curtice Strathclyde University.

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Presentation on theme: "So what happened to the electoral system in 2010? John Curtice Strathclyde University."— Presentation transcript:

1 So what happened to the electoral system in 2010? John Curtice Strathclyde University

2 The (principal) case for FPP Provides for a system of alternating single party majority government That means that governments are clearly held accountable And that they are made and unmade by voters rather than via back room deals.

3 How FPP is supposed to deliver Discourages people from voting for third parties Does not give third parties seats Gives the winner a clear bonus… …irrespective of who that winner is

4 Rise and Fall of the Two-Party Vote

5 The Rise of Others

6 The LD Vote – a little less even

7 All Third Party Seats

8 How FPP delivers a winners bonus Plenty of seats are competitive between Conservative and Labour. So if there is a small swing from one to the other, lots of seats change hands. So even if the largest party only has a small lead in votes over the second party, it still secures an overall majority.

9 The Decline in Marginal Seats

10 Long-Term Variation in Swing SouthMidlandsNorthScotlandWales

11 Potential Sources of Bias Unevenly sized constituencies – Differences in electorate size – Differences in turnout – (Differences in third party vote) More efficiently distributed vote – Win more seats by small majorities – (Waste more votes in third party seats)

12 Trends in Overall Bias

13 The Anti-Tory Bias ConLab Electorate72,34568,612 Turnout => Voters49,43641,842 Small Majorities6081 Vote in Third Party Seats

14 How The System Now (Doesnt) Work Con % Lead (GB) ConLabLDOthers

15 How FPP no longer works No longer stops voters from supporting third parties Has become less effective at denying third parties representation Has become less effective at giving the winning party a bonus Is no longer even-handed in its treatment of the two largest parties

16 The Implications of the Constituencies Bill Will reduce but not eliminate the anti-Con bias – Boundaries will still be nearly 5 years out of date – Will not affect other sources of bias Unlikely significantly to change the range of results that produce a hung parliament Reduces accountability of MPs to constituents?


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