Wednesday, 10 June 2009

Be still my beating heart – electoral reform is on the agenda.

The news that Gordon Brown is to give electoral reform “consideration” was leaked in advance of the official announcement. According to Newsnight's Paul Mason, it is a condition placed on Brown for his uncontested leadership. The Alternative Vote system is the one the government favours. Surely, this is to be welcomed by all … surely not that is.

Meanwhile it looks like the House of Lords is to become elected. Moving aside the objection that an elected second chamber is not as desirable as most people think (now there is a future blog post to look forward too), is it really wise to reform the second chamber when the future electoral system of the first chamber is unknown?

No voting system is perfect. If the second chamber is to become elected, why not use a different voting system to the one used in the first chamber in order to balance out the faults. For example, a first past the post system in one chamber to deliver a strong government and proportional representation in the other in order to better reflect voter intention.

What will be the outcome? We wait with bated breath.

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