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April 20, 2011


Super Blue

The essential difference is that ALL voters can change their choice for subsequent rounds - the system is called "exhaustive ballots" and was used at all the SGMs and primaries I have attended.

jack c

So nothing about all the lies that the No campaign have been putting out?

It doesn't add up...

There are several rounds of candidate selection by MPs before the final pair are put into a runoff election for the membership. I don't suppose the interviewer had the wit to ask why Clegg wasn't sharing the Lib Dem leadership with Huhne and Hughes and Farron in proportion to votes cast in a PR election.


Because it wouldn't have been a witty question.

PR is for parliaments. Absolutely nobody advocates using it to elect a single office-holder, like a president or party leader.

David Belchamber

Super Blue highlights the difference succinctly at 4.02 above. Didn't Ed Miliband make the same mistake a couple of days ago?

If the two leading protagonists for the Yes vote don't even know how it works, what hope is there for the average voter? You just cannot vote for something you don't understand.

With AV, once you have cast your initial vote and also indicated all your various preferences, it is purely chance that dictates how your next vote is cast (if it becomes necessary). 'Exhaustive ballots' are the equivalent of a series of FPTP elections with each voter having total control over one single vote each time (a bit like a Bill going through Parliament with a series of amendments).

Cannot CCHQ get someone to analyse succinctly and accurately this essential difference in principle between the two systems and then publicise it? There is an awful lot of heat and little light being given off by the arguments that are raging. Please establish the principles!

Account Deleted

Clegg is basically right. The Tory system of choosing its leader is much closer to AV than it is to FPTP. Speaking briefly to non-technical people, it is not a great exaggeration to say what he said. It is more accurate than the Yes campaign claim that lots of countries use the British system of FPTP (hint: the US doesn't, given its primary system. Only Canada comes to mind.)

Account Deleted

Sorry, I meant to say more accurate than the "No" campaign claim...


Yet more Calamity Clegg porkies!

Victor Southern

The public discussion on AV has been led by two very strange alliances. I am dismayed by the lack of clarity of thought displayed.I was initially sympathetic to AV having attended meetings to hear the values of both sides. My main attraction to AV was the very poor case put at those discussions for FPTP. As the weeks have gone by I have seen the AV side attempting to justify its case with a set of equally illogical and often absurd propositions.

I feel that it was for the AV camp to make the running, not for the present system to do so - we know how that works.

On balance and after a lot of thought I do not see that the AV camp have made their case with enough logic and truth to convince. For that reason I have decided firmly to vote No.


Nick Clegg told numerous lies during the General Election and is still doing it.
Clegg knows that it was not AV that elected Mr Cameron as party leader but chose to tell the lie in any event.
If you have experienced Liberal Democrats during a general election then you will know they fight dirty.


Over 50 countries throughout the world use FPTP.
Only 3 countries use AV.


Robert - Not really true. France has run-off voting, effectively AV, as does India for its president, and much of Latin America and Russia. Most EU countries use PR, as does Israel, New Zealand and Japan. Indeed even the USA effectively has AV, as most presidential and congressional candidates must get 50% (albeit they tend not to have as large minor parties).


Fact remains that if the Tories had used FPTP then David Davis would be the Leader, for sure, and Gordon Brown would be the PM, quite probably.

Leon Steed

If Conservative MPs had known in advance that FPTP was being used in the last leadership election, how do we know, for sure, that they would have voted the same way? However, supposing FPTP had been used and MPs had voted the same way, would it have been "fair" that David Cameron had been denied victory due to the decision of Ken Clarke and Liam Fox to stand, something over which he had no control? At least AV eliminates this unfairness by effectively reducing each election to a two-horse race.

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