Wednesday, 4 May 2011


On the eve of this vote, it is important to note that it is not that important. The coalition does not stand or fall by it. The meeting of minds on the liberty of the individual and decentralisation of power was a more powerful driver of the agreement, together with the Conservatives' willingness to move towards our social agenda. As Chris Huhne said (Newsnight, 1st February), the Alternative Vote system would give voters more choice, it would be the most minimal change. Indeed, he reckoned that both Thatcher and Blair would have had bigger majorities under AV.

That great Liberal Michael Meadowcroft wrote in Liberal Democrat News before the general election: "For Liberal Democrats it is not a question of 'any reform will do' or that AV is some sort of halfway house. It simply isn't, and it would show an alarming lack of confidence in the party's policy and its efficacy if we were to fail to go for the one reform that deals with the key problems of a failing democracy."

So, win, lose or draw on AV tomorrow, I and thousands of Liberal Democrats will continue to fight for STV, a truly proportional system which maintains the constituency link.


Maelo Manning said...

Dear Frank,
I have added you to my blog list of favourite blogs. Did you save your seat?

Frank Little said...

Thank you, Maelo. See for the narrow win of our regional AM!

I'd forgotten about this AV post. I had written it many months ago and scheduled it for the eve of the poll, knowing that I would be busy that day. I think it stands up quite well. As Boris Becker said after losing in the first round of Wimbledon to a qualifier, "It wasn't World War III. Nobody died out there."