William Eichler 02 June 2017

Dramatic increase in tactical voting reveals flaws in ‘lottery’ electoral system

One in five voters are planning to vote ‘tactically’ in the General Election, campaigners find.

A survey from the Electoral Reform Society (ERS) has revealed 20% of the electorate say they will vote for a candidate or party best positioned to keep out someone they dislike.

This compares to a figure of just 9% for a similar question asked in the run up to the 2015 election.

Another survey from the ERS also showed 63% of Brits claim they are interested in the election, with 30% saying they feel well informed about the vote.

The figures for tactical voting are broadly the same across all age groups and social backgrounds, ERS found.

The campaign group’s research discovered 18% for 65-74 year olds and 19% for 18-24 year olds are voting tactically, as well as 18% for professional AB Brits and 18% of those in the unskilled DE demographic.

Around 26% of people in the North East, and 25% of people in the East Midlands, will be voting tactically, compared to just 8% in Scotland.

‘It is frankly astonishing that a fifth of Brits feel unable to vote for their first choice party this election,’ said Darren Hughes, deputy chief executive of the ERS.

‘That’s a huge proportion of people having to hold their nose and opt for a “lesser evil” rather than who they actually support – and a significant and worrying rise on the last election.

‘This is a situation foisted on voters by our arcane voting system – one that means people often feel forced to vote for their second or even third-choice party.

‘First Past the Post leads people to try and second-guess how others will vote, rather than being able to simply back who they believe in.

‘This whole situation turns elections into a gamble around splitting the vote and trying to predict who on the left/right is most likely to win. That isn’t a democratic election – it’s a lottery election.’

SIGN UP
For your free daily news bulletin
Highways jobs

Team Leader - Nexus Support - Hockley

Essex County Council
£21258 - £23437 per annum
Team Leader - Nexus Support - HockleyPermanent, Full Time £21,258 to £23,437 per annumLocation
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Support Worker - Nexus Support - Wickford

Essex County Council
£10 - £12.50 per hour
Essex County Council (ECC) are delighted to be supporting Nexus Support to recruit Support Workers on both permanent and bank contracts for their s England, Essex, Wickford
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Support Worker - Nexus Support - Rochford

Essex County Council
£10 - £12.50 per hour
Essex County Council (ECC) are delighted to be supporting Nexus Support to recruit Support Workers on both permanent and bank contracts for their su England, Essex, Rochford
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Assistant Director - Investment Strategy

West Midlands Pension Fund
£101,074 - £121,753
This is a rare opportunity to join one of the largest and most progressive pension funds in the UK at an exciting time in its development. Wolverhampton, West Midlands
Recuriter: West Midlands Pension Fund

Registered Manager - Children's Residential Home

Cumbria County Council
44,624 – 45,648
An exciting opportunity has arisen for the right person to join our Children’s Residential Home in Penrith as Registered Manager. Penrith, Cumbria
Recuriter: Cumbria County Council

Partner Content

Circular highways is a necessity not an aspiration – and it’s within our grasp

Shell is helping power the journey towards a circular paving industry with Shell Bitumen LT R, a new product for roads that uses plastics destined for landfill as part of the additives to make the bitumen.

Support from Effective Energy Group for Local Authorities to Deliver £430m Sustainable Warmth Funded Energy Efficiency Projects

Effective Energy Group is now offering its support to the 40 Local Authorities who have received a share of the £430m to deliver their projects on the ground by surveying properties and installing measures.

Pay.UK – the next step in Bacs’ evolution

Dougie Belmore explains how one of the main interfaces between you and Bacs is about to change.