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Tag: Voting

Three Ways to Improve Referenda

Three Ways to Improve Referenda

Whilst it’s right that Vote Leave are being fined, it’s absurd to suggest that this renders the result invalid. That being said, this – and other events before, during and after the referendum – do highlight a number of areas where our rules around referenda could helpfully be strengthened. First though, let’s get the Vote Leave situation out of the way As I said above, there is no reason to doubt the outcome of the investigation. Vote Leave seem unambiguously…

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Votes at 16: A Call for Consistency

Votes at 16: A Call for Consistency

I’m not an expert on child development. I don’t know whether 17 is the right age at which we should let people get a driving license, or whether this should be changed to 16 or 18. Similarly, I don’t have a strongly informed opinion on other similar issues, such as the fact that: 18 is the age you can buy a pint of beer in a pub 18 is the age you can use a sunbed 18 is the age…

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More Deals and No Deals

More Deals and No Deals

In the discussions (on and offline) following my recent post ‘No Deal is Better than a Bad Deal’, one idea that came up a number of times was that there was a third option, to call the whole thing off. This was invariably suggested by people who had originally voted Remain. Whilst including this option would make a much less snappy television show title, it is obviously theoretically correct that this is an option. I will even go further: if…

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Democracy in Action

Democracy in Action

I attended my first election counting on Thursday evening. If you’ve never been to one, it’s a sight to see. Utterly simple yet incredibly effective; a community coming together to provide one of the most important public goods that we know of: democratic government. There must have been close to 200 people in the hall that night: counters, the returning officer, candidates and observers, all working through the night. The counters are (usually) employees of the local council, whilst the…

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In Defence of First Past the Post

In Defence of First Past the Post

Despite the British people opting in favour of first-past-the-post (FPTP) by a decisive 68:32 margin, in many of the circles I move support for other voting systems, in particular proportional representation (PR) is so de rigeur that FPTP’s merits are seldom even considered. Despite this, I continue to believe that FPTP remains  the best and most appropriate voting mechanism for political elections, and in particular significantly better than PR(1).   What do the systems involve? As a very brief summary:…

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