28 Sep 2011

Peter Hain walks into a bar...

Bad jokes are rarely worth repeating , yet this week Peter Hain resurrected his one-liner that the semi-proportional system used to elect the National Assembly for Wales (a combination of 40 First Past The Post seats and 20 AMS list seats) should be scrapped. The issue has come to fore because of the parliamentary boundary review. Presently Assembly and Westminster constituencies share the same […]
13 Sep 2011

Reduce and Equalise, the battle starts here

Yesterday at midnight the Boundary Commission for England published its initial proposals , providing us with the first glimpse of Britain’s political map in 2015. The aim is to cut the number of MPs from 650 to 600 by 2015 - a radical proposal that has not yet ignited the interest of the public but which will have major implications for the UK’s political landscape – and for voters. Don’t be […]
12 Sep 2011

From Eastbourne to Sheffield – conference season begins

Conference season kicked off this weekend with the UKIP conference in Eastbourne and the Greens in Sheffield. Arran Cottam, Sheffield for Democracy, Caroline Lucas MP, Katie Ghose (ERS) and Jean Lambert MEP The Electoral Reform Society attended both conferences and held two well-attended fringe events to consider the future of democracy in the UK. There's a lot that divides these two parties but […]
1 Sep 2011

Making Votes Count - at the Electoral Reform Society.

Well our 2011 council election results are out. At the Society we aim to practice what we preach. We use the Single Transferable Vote (STV) to elect our governing council. And that's because STV makes votes count. It's hard to waste your vote under STV. You're not penalised if your preferred candidate doesn't win, and you can still have a say if your favourite has already crossed the winners line […]
31 Aug 2011

Reforming for the future

It’s been a important few weeks for the Society. Our new Council have been elected and we recently gathered with our members in London for our Annual General Meeting. For those of you who weren't able to attecnd the AGM we wanted to take this opportunity to fill you in on the latest developments at the Society. A New Look Society We know that reform has to start at home which is why since the […]
16 Aug 2011

Bedford to Brighton Commuter Roars!

The Guardian reports that a 13% increase in rail fares 'may break government' . There's a suggestion that a legion of irate season ticket holders may now force yet another coalition U-turn. So what does this have to do with electoral reform? Actually quite a bit. The logic to this latest alarmist headline is rooted in the failings of our electoral system; First Past the Post, which allows a […]
10 Aug 2011

The polls are open for our 2011 Council elections

We're delighted to announce that the polls are now open for the Electoral Reform Society's Council elections 2011. Electing the Council is an important opportunity - available only to members - to help shape and renew the Society as this is your chance to choose the individuals you want to represent your views and interests over the next two years. Please read the candidates’ election statements […]
5 Aug 2011

Trusting the People: The Lessons of British Columbia?

A farmer, a school teacher, a politician - just who would you trust to set the rules of politics? That’s the question being posed this week with the launch of the In the Public Interest campaign. The call for a publicly funded ‘Citizens Jury’ to apply a “public interest first test” is a refreshing answer to the problem of entrenched elites and the failure of self-regulation. It’s a welcome […]
12 Jul 2011

Murdoch and the dangers of absolute power

Another tumultuous week looms for the Murdoch Empire as the churn around the phone-hacking scandal continues unabated. Clearly there are important questions to be asked here about press standards and journalistic ethics but is there also a larger issue at play? Murdoch’s papers currently dominate the market, boasting almost 40% of the total circulation of UK newspapers (source: […]
30 Jun 2011

Localism, democracy & a lively debate at the LGA Conference

The Electoral Reform Society's fringe event at the Local Government Association Conference 2011 instigated a lively discussion around localism, and how Citizen Initiated Referendums might affect local politics. Direct democracy is not a new idea; the ancient Greeks pioneered the practice of giving citizens the power to make decisions on individual laws, and modern democracies such as Switzerland […]