'Oh, so that's who Richard Morris is..." Lord Hattersley on The Daily Politics

'An influential activist' - The Guardian

'Iain Dale, without the self loathing' - Matthew Fox in The New Statesman

You are a tinker...' - Tim Farron

Tuesday, 13 September 2011

9 salient observations on the proposed boundary changes. And a ringer

It is traditional when formulating lists that you make 10 salient points. I only had 9 so have added a ringer. See if you can spot it.

1. Against the 2010 election results in England, Cons lose 2% of their seats in England, Lab 7.3% + Lib Dems 23.25% under the proposals. H/t to @pollycurtis.

2. There is an argument that as the coalition agreement says "we will bring forward a bill.... for the creation of fewer and more equal sized constituencies" and we have done that, we are under no obligation to support it. I do not buy this argument.

3. There is another argument that reducing seats in The Commons was intrinsically linked to changing the voting system. Without AV, the sole reason for introducing the change is to save a relatively small amount of money, and this alone is not enough reason to change it.

This is a better argument. But one we will still lose.

4. Accepting changes to equalise the sizes of constituencies but keeping the number of MP's the same would be a good compromise. It would be fairer yet keep average constituencies small enough for MP's to stay close to their constituents. I quite like this argument.

5. There is a point of view that says all of this debate is facile, and premature. The proposals are just that, so far they only cover England, and 2 years of debate will occur before anything passes into law.

I have every sympathy with those making this point, but would say in return 'where's the fun in that?'

6. The changes are based on the size of current electoral rolls. As failure to appear on electoral rolls tends to be higher in deprived areas, the changes are biased against the poor.

This is factually correct - but finding an alternative is tricky.

7. Activists from all 3 main parties are claiming the proposals have a built in bias against them. This cannot factually be true.

8. The winner of the 2015 election in the new constituency of Mersey Banks will be exposed at some point for claiming the purchase of a small rowboat on expenses.

9. 'Boundary Commission' was trending this morning on Twitter. This may indicate that Twitter is not entirely representative of the UK population as a whole

10. Apparently the MPs in the constituencies surrounding Mid Beds all have excellent claims to that seat's wards, making it unlikely the Member for Mid Beds will be able to usurp any of them, after the demise of that particular constituency. Shame that. Ho hum.

1 comment: