Blogs

17 Apr 2015

Three days left

However you decide to vote after last night’s TV debate, you need to do one thing first: there’s just three days left to register to vote , with the deadline on the 20 th of April. Encouragingly, 25,000 logged on after the challengers debate to do so. That’s because it’s easier to do than ever, and takes less than five minutes - about the time it takes to make a cup of tea. And you don’t even […]
10 Apr 2015

Reading the tea leaves

The outcome of this election is, on the whole, unpredictable. Who will form the next government is the question on everyone’s lips. But in hundreds of seats across the country, people already know the result. In Britain’s many ‘safe seats’, this election’s outcome is sadly a foregone conclusion. In fact, so safe are some of these seats that we’re confidently predicting the outcome in 368 […]
30 Mar 2015

How popular is power-sharing?

Yesterday the views of Brits were unveiled to the world. And in some ways, they make for some startling reading. The British Social Attitudes Survey – a renowned national study of voters’ opinions – was released on Thursday. It covers all sorts of issues on what citizens think. But a few things stood out for us. Firstly, just 17% say they trust governments “just about always” or “most of the time […]
24 Mar 2015

Working together

What is the best way for parties to share power? How can you make minority government work? And how do you negotiate a successful coalition? These are some of the questions likely to be at the forefront of the party leaders' minds over the next couple of months. As we near a General Election which is almost certain to produce a hung parliament, now is the perfect time to draw on politicians’ rich […]
23 Mar 2015

Purchasing peerages

What many already knew about the Lords has just been confirmed by academics. A new working paper from the University of Oxford’s Department of Economics puts it simply: the “relationship between donations and nominations [for peerages] has been found to be significant”. The report has caused shockwaves. Entitled “Is There a Market for Peerages?...A Study in the Link Between Party Political […]
20 Mar 2015

A sectarian voting system

The announcement by the two main unionist parties in Northern Ireland that they have entered into an electoral pact for the up-coming general election highlights a major problem with our electoral system. The idea that parties step down in some seats to maximise their votes in others through an alliance with another party is a direct result of the outdated First Past the Post (FPTP) system. In […]
16 Mar 2015

Shifting boundaries

With the General Election now just weeks away, and speculation about possible coalition arrangements taking centre stage, it would be easy to overlook a very important and immediate legislative priority that the new government, whatever its composition, needs to address. So it's welcome that this week the House of Commons Political and Constitutional Reform Committee has published a report […]
13 Mar 2015

Women in Westminster

One of the chief reasons why people are increasingly alienated from our politics is the fact that Westminster looks so little like the people it is there to represent. At the moment, barely one in five MPs are women, which simply isn’t good enough. We desperately need to see more women in Parliament, and a general election gives parties a chance to correct the imbalance. A new Electoral Reform […]
10 Mar 2015

Attack Ads

Primaries and presidential style television debates are two features of American politics which have already made their way to the UK (although it’s anyone’s guess if the TV debates are here to stay). So it’s no surprise that the well-established American culture of ‘attack ads’ - typically 30 second films that are mini character assassinations of a political opponent – is also taking hold, with […]
4 Mar 2015

#GPconf

I’m pleased to be going to Green Party conference at the ACC Liverpool this weekend, representing the ERS. Sign our petition to introduce proportional representation for local elections There’s lots to be discussed at the upcoming conference, as it’s an exciting time for the Greens in the run-up to the election, particularly with a rising membership. But the party has to deal with an extremely […]