Wednesday, May 05, 2010

How to Vote : advice for the swing voter (3)

An amazing 40% of voters have yet to decide what to do with their vote.

Allow me to help.

The wise  voter needs first of all to find out if the seat is "safe".
Find out here.

If it is a safe seat, all votes apart from those for the incumbent are "wasted" in the sense that they do not get any representation in Parliament. There's our First Past the Post system (FPTP) for you. It is a crap system, and it has to go.

In a safe seat, then you might as well vote for your principles.The best signal to send is with a Green Party vote, because it signals your wish for radical reform of our political and economic system, reform that means your children and grandchildren will have a decent life. In other words, you get more bangs for your ballot with a Green vote.

If on the other hand you are in a marginal constituency, then I as a Green would strongly urge you to vote Green, if that option is open, since your vote will lever the winner to be more green in Parliament so as to win your vote back.

But I recognise that tactical voting is very appealing in a marginal seat, and here surely any thinking voter will wish to vote ABT (Anything But Tory) for the following reasons:
  1. They are infested with climate change deniers
  2. Their economic slash-and-burn policies will bring on a double dip recession
  3. They support the ridiculous FPTP system
  4. They would increase the Rich-Poor Gap.
This list is not complete, but should be enough to persuade any sentient being not to vote Tory.

If you have a choice between Labour and LibDem, then back the LibDem in the hope of getting a well-hung Parliament, with Vince Cable in the Treasury, and Proportional Representation well and truly on the menu.

All voters who care about democracy and political reform are recommended to murmur the words "First Past the Post Has Got To Go" to the clerks as they hand you your precious polling form.

I hope this is helpful.


HannahB said...

very helpful, I shall be linking to this from my blog.

HannahB said...

p.s first link doesnt seem to work

Anonymous said...

mmm, you sound like a politician, saying two things at the same time and pretending not to be contradicting yourself

not a good thing and most unlike you

DocRichard said...

Thanks HannaB
Hello Anonymous. I assume you mean the bit where I say "Vote Green in a marginal seat, but otherwise vote ABT?".

I do not see a contradiction. In any group, there is a continuum of behaviour. As I said, core voters will only vote for their party. In reality, some will vote tactically. I wish I had a £ for every person that has said to me, "I'm voting LibDem to get PR, and then I will vote Green".

Politics does force politicians into daft positions. Thing is, the speaker has to toe the party line, even if s/he doesn't really agree with it, because otherwise the media scream "Your Party is split".

Anyway. We shall see. On Friday. Fingers crossed for a balanced Parliament.