The UK electoral system has delivered an unbalanced vote share

Friday, 13 December 2019 3:19 PM [ Last Update: Friday, 13 December 2019 3:22 PM ]

A ballot box
London, UK – The First Past The Post (FPTP) voting system in the UK is the standard charter when casting an election. This election was no exception as Boris Johnson’s Tory party easily attained the 326 votes needed to secure a parliamentary majority in the house of commons.

Whereas the FPTP system is simple to understand, easy to tally, and gives access to elected members to the constituents, there does lie some heavy criticism in the system.

The fact only the winners vote count towards eventually selecting a government, the votes cast for the losing candidates essentially are irrelevant in the overall election result. This voting system clearly favours some parties over others, and the demographics of the constituents play a large part in securing a seat at the Palace of Westminster, The House of Commons.

This system fundamentally dictates that a member of parliament can be elected with a moderately small share of the overall vote cast by the respective electorate.

This example has been confirmed in the recent UK general election. Official figures from dpa-inocom show that the Conservative Party won 364 seats with a 43.6% share of the vote, whilst Labour took 203 seats with 32.2% share of the ballots. The disproportional aspect becomes even more apparent when we scale down to the smaller parties.

The Liberal Democrats secured 11 seats with 11.5% of the vote, whilst the SNP took 48 seats with only 3.9% of the total popular vote. This manifestly displays the notion that demographic ideology plays a significant part in the overall election result, and raises the question of whether the system is a truly democratic means of election.

The Democratic Unionist Party in Northern Ireland secured 8 seats in Westminster with a total vote count of 244,128. However, the Brexit Party, run by Nigel Farage, secured 642,303 votes, yet did not win a single seat in parliament, once again demonstrating a hugely inconsistent flaw in the voting system,

If calculated on voting numbers alone, in a vote per party system, parties such as the Green Party, with over 864,000 votes should have secured more than the 1 single seat they earned, as per the case with all other parties, in fact, Westminster would have looked very different under such a system.

The reality is that the UK now has a government elected by 13,941,200 people out of a registered electoral pool of 31,960,517, which essentially means, that the democratic nation of Great Britain and Northern Ireland is being run by a government voted for by a mere 43.6% of the population, which suggest the majority of the population did not vote for Boris Johnson, or his ‘democratically’ elected government.

Kazan- Kazan National Research Technical University Казанский национальный исследовательский технический университет имени А. Н. Туполева he graduated in Economics in 1982

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