Blogs

13 Jan 2017

How will the 2017 French presidential election work?

After last year’s political whirlwind, attention has turned to 2017’s elections for evidence of further shocks. Voters are going to the polls in the Netherlands, in Germany but most attention is focused on France, whose election takes place in April and May, and where the far-right Marine Le Pen currently polls in first place. On the centre-right the candidate of choice is Francois Fillon, who […]
4 Jan 2017

Compulsory voter ID would only add to Britain’s democratic deficit

In true festive spirit, the government chose December 27 to respond to former local government minister Eric Pickles’ proposals to tackle alleged voter fraud in UK elections. Sadly, the response isn’t much of a belated Christmas present for our poorly balanced democracy. Let’s start with a bit of context. In August, Sir Pickles’s report, Securing the ballot: review into electoral fraud , was […]
20 Dec 2016

Our top 10 most read blogs in 2016

It’s been a busy year for the ERS – from a big set of elections in May, to the EU vote, Lords scandals (an annually-guaranteed affair, it seems), voter registration drives, party funding spats, and – very positively – steps forward along the path to PR. But what were you, our dear reader, most interested in this year? Here’s our top 10 count-down… 10. First up, our unreformed House of Lords […]
14 Dec 2016

MPs are getting organised for a fairer voting system

Last month, we saw a symbolic step forward in the Parliamentary push for fair votes. 16 Parliamentarians gathered in Portcullis House on the 29 th November for the launch of the All Party Parliamentary Group for Proportional Representation. And it was a truly cross-party affair. From Labour’s Jon Cruddas to the Conservatives’ Ben Howlett, and from Green Party co-leader Caroline Lucas to the […]
12 Dec 2016

Local democracy in Scotland needs all of us

Here’s a fact for you: a quarter of Scots in a recent BMG poll for the ERS said they would rather finish the ironing than go and vote in a council election. While our commitment to neat clothing is commendable, disregard for local democracy is at once frightening and understandable. Why is it that local democracy – close to where we live, the communities, the towns and villages that we think of […]
8 Dec 2016

Here’s to our members and supporters

This Saturday we held our largest members and supporters conference and AGM for many years – topping off what has been a great campaigning year for the ERS. It was a fantastic success, and it was wonderful to have so many members and supporters in one room – including lots of people new to the campaign for fair votes. If you managed to make it, thanks for coming! As well as policy workshops, Q […]
7 Dec 2016

Cutting numbers can’t be the end of the road for Lords reform

It’s a sad but true fact that, in general, it’s not good news that brings the need for Lords reform to the fore in British politics. But on Monday, a packed chamber of Peers gathered to discuss the need to cut the size of the upper house. And while few would have followed the whole debate , it was by all measures a lively discussion, with nearly 60 Peers putting their names down to speak. Because […]
2 Dec 2016

Missing in Richmond: voter choice

Well, the results are in. Campaigners campaigned, and voters voted. But not all was well. Because the elephant in the room in this by-election was the absence of something that should be a given in any 21 st century: real voter choice. That’s because three parties – UKIP, the Conservatives and the Greens – took the decision to stand aside to turn this into a two-horse race, in this case between […]
1 Dec 2016

Adeiladu Cynulliad Cenedlaethol Cryfach ("Ni mynd i fod angen cwch mwy...")

Adeiladu Cynulliad Cenedlaethol Cryfach ( "Ni mynd i fod angen cwch mwy...") O ystyried y swnami sydd wedi siglo ein gwleidyddiaeth y flwyddyn hon, gall ymddangos yn amser anffodus i drafod yr angen am fwy o Aelodau Cynulliad. Mewn blwyddyn o sioc a rhethreg poblyddol, mae'r galw am fwy o ACau yn un anodd, ac i lawer yn ddyfroedd dwfn, peryglus iawn. Ond mae hefyd yn angenrheidiol. Mae'r hinsawdd […]
1 Dec 2016

Building a stronger National Assembly, or why 'We’re Gonna Need a Bigger Boat...'

Given the tidal waves that have rocked our politics this year, it may seem an unusual time to be discussing the need for more Assembly Members. In a year of populist shocks and rhetoric, the call for more AMs is difficult, and to many, treacherous waters indeed. But it is also necessary. The political weather has changed, making the challenge of ensuring the Assembly can navigate the new seas we […]