Tuesday, May 10, 2005


Old news, I know, but a few thoughts on the election.

My vote: I don't view my vote for the Greens as wasted. Despite another huge majority for Labour in my constituency, the Greens almost doubled their share. On the one hand, Green voters might be disheartened that despite around 5 or 6% in seats where they contested, they will have no representation in Parliament. But, I'm taking a glass half full view on this one. Unless you vote for something, rather than against, what is the point of voting.

Proportional representation: that leads nicely to an issue on the minds of pundits and minority candidates. Caroline Lucas, on the UK Greens' European Parliament members, appeared on BBC World (the election coverage I had to rely on in Paris). She made the point that where PR has been adopted - European elections, Scotland and Wales - the minority parties do get representation and their share of the vote is consistent and, more importantly, counts. Pundits said that the Tories should bite the bullet and support PR. But, why should they. Even though Labour won outright (with a still sizeable Parliamentary majority) with 36% of the vote, All it will take is a small swing at the next election for a change of power. PR in the next election might well deprive them of power. The current system favours the two main parties. So, don't hold your breath.

Election moment: not Tony buying ice cream for Gordon. On the evening of 4 May we travelled up to London on the train. Tessa Jowell, Labour candidate and Culture Secretary, was handing out leaflets at West Norwood station. I took the opportunity to politely, but forcefully tell her that I could not bring myself to vote for Labour because of Iraq. I have no idea if the message sank in. But, it made me feel better.

:: Posted by pete @ 20:40