The news yesterday that Nicola Sturgeon has decided to add electoral reform to her long list of demands – demonstrates to anyone prepared to analyse her statements that this is a woman who can most kindly be described as a parochial politician.
Ms Sturgeon claims that she wishes to give “backbone” to the Labour Party! To describe her comments as being “disingenuous” would be akin to describing Mr Mohammed Emwazi – aka Jihadi John – as “not a nice man.”
Now British Gazette readers will recall the Editor of this organ drawing their attention to the fact that the Editor has been a very long standing supporter of electoral reform. In fact since just before the birth of Nicola Ferguson Sturgeon on Sunday 19th July 1970 in Ayrshire Central Hospital in Irvine. This was because I had the month before taken part in a mock election at school and had as a core part of my platform argued for the Single Transferable Vote to be introduced into the UK.
NB: I lost – heavily. The Communist Party’s candidate won! I will not disclose which party I stood for as I do not want to raise the blood pressure of some of our readers!
Now, Ms Sturgeon’s motives are so obvious that we need not detail them – especially as these have been detailed at length previously. What we should and will describe is the option open to the other parties other than those (coalition, confidence & supply) which have been previously outlined at length.
The other option is to force another election. We could in fact call this “La solution européenne.”
You Dear Reader will of course know why – because if the EU don’t like the result the voters give; they simply order new elections until the people vote the way they want!
Should a minority government (be it Conservative or Labour) wish to do this they would first have to put a Queen’s/Gracious Speech to the vote and for that vote to carry in the Commons. An early defeat on a measure AFTER this with a No Confidence Motion attached would force another dissolution and another General Election.
Such could be done within a month if needed and we could be looking at a second summer election. In order to get the QS/GS through the official opposition would have to abstain. This would clearly indicate connivance by the two main parties and would be reported as such.
NB: The Queen’s/Gracious Speech would HAVE to get voted through for were a government fail to get a QS/GS through, the monarch would be within their rights to ask another to try and form a government without having to dissolve Parliament again.
The reasons for both main parties doing this would be obvious: To attempt to persuade the voters into voting for the two main parties. For the Tories, UKIP and the Lib-Dems would be their targets and for Labour there would be the SNP (Scotland) Plaid Cymru (Wales) and the Greens (England) in that order. This is because of the well known fact that the First Past the Post system works when there are only two parties contesting the seats.
This is why the politicians and the voters in the U.S.A. call it “the two party system.”
Politically, it will be easier for Cameron to do this than it would be for Miliband. There are strong arguments for both main parties to follow this course of action. It would be seen as “turning the tables on the Scots” – whilst this would play badly in Scotland it would play well in England. Labour strategists might conclude that Scotland is lost in the short term and therefore anything that bolsters their support in England is good. There problem would be that Ms Sturgeon would be waxing lyrical about things the left deem as being GOOD THINGS.
Clearly however the most likely to pursue this path will be Cameron – but he will only be able to do so if the Tories have more seats than Labour – even by one seat.
The Tory strategy at such a second election would be obvious: “A vote for Nigel is a vote for Ed and Nicola….” This would likely be successful. The other factor is turnout. As we know old people are more likely to vote than young people and Cameron would be betting on this as he would hope that more old Tory and former UKIP voters would turn out for him than young Labour, former Lib-Dem and Green voters turn out for Miliband in England. Of course, that Labour will have “sat on their hands” and allow a Tory QS/GS to go through would incense all Scottish Labour and SNP voters!
Of course Ms Sturgeon KNOWS THIS – which is why she is so cheerful!