The need for democracy is greater than ever

democracy
Image thanks to ilsr.org

The Covid-19 pandemic has turned the world on its head. Every aspect of our lives has been affected, including politics. At the time that we need good society leaders the most, we find that we are represented by a government that the majority of us did not vote for. 

Are they doing a good job? Could anyone else have done better? Nobody can answer these questions other than through speculation but it is a fact that our first past the post electoral system (FPTP) lets us down badly.

The Electoral Reform Society’s analysis of the 2019 general election showed that: ‘Across the UK, 14.5 million people (45.3% of all voters) cast their vote for a non elected candidate, while 8.1 million votes (23.5%) were ‘surplus’, i.e. they were cast for the elected candidate but did not contribute to their election. All in all over 22.6 million votes (70.8%) did not contribute to electing an MP.’

This is shocking and does not take into account that 32% of the electorate admitted to having voted tactically.  An electoral system should reflect the votes of the electorate and people should not have to vote tactically.

All governments use national crises to grab more power, in the main with the best of intention. All of these powers end up being used for purposes that were not originally intended, think of Police drones over Derbyshire and the ICO’s permission to allow the government to access all mobile location data.

These powers need to be checked yet here we are with Parliament suspended early for Easter, by a government that has a majority of seats but not a majority of the votes. Now is the time for all politicians to be working together for the good of the country. Now the need for democracy is even greater.

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