First Past the Post

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Submitted By lolarose
Words 365
Pages 2
First the past post
• Representatives can get elected on tiny amounts of public support as it does not matter by how much they win, only that they get more votes than other candidates.

• It encourages tactical voting, as voters vote not for the candidate they most prefer, but against the candidate they most dislike.

• FPTP in effect wastes huge numbers of votes, as votes cast in a constituency for losing candidates, or for the winning candidate above the level they need to win that seat, count for nothing.

• FPTP severely restricts voter choice. Parties are coalitions of many different viewpoints. If the preferred-party candidate in your constituency has views with which you don't agree, you don't have a means of saying so at the ballot box.

• Rather than allocating seats in line with actual support, FPTP rewards parties with 'lumpy' support, i.e. with just enough votes to win in each particular area. Thus, losing 4,000 votes in one area can be a good idea if it means you pick up 400 votes in another. With smaller parties, this works in favour of those with centralised support.

• With relatively small constituency sizes, the way boundaries are drawn can have important effects on the election result, which encourages attempts at gerrymandering

• Small constituencies also lead to a proliferation of safe seats, where the same party is all but guaranteed re-election at each election. This not only in effect disenfranchises a region's voters, but it leads to these areas being ignored when it comes to framing policy

• If large areas of the country are electoral deserts for a particular party, not only is the area ignored by that party, but also ambitious politicians from the area have to move away from their homeland if they want to have influence within their party.

• Because FPTP restricts a constituency's choice of candidates, representation…...

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