The Tories are attacking British democracy: suppressing the right to vote, undermining the right to protest, imposing punishing trade union laws, lying to Parliament, using public funds for private gain and spreading bigotry and division. Faith in politics is at an all time low.
Devolution was a major achievement of the last Labour government. But by gifting the Tories a majority of seats on a minority of the vote, the First Past the Post (FPTP) electoral system has left our democracy wide open to attack. In 19 of the last 20 general elections most people voted for parties to the left of the Tories, yet they have governed for two-thirds of that time and are using this power to rig the system further. FPTP encourages apathy and disengagement by forcing parties to prioritise swing voters in marginal constituencies while neglecting most voters and communities.
Labour is already committed to extending democracy, from strengthening devolution to Lords reform. But our democratic system will remain vulnerable – and our society at constant risk of Tory minority rule – until we replace FPTP with a form of Proportional Representation.
Conference resolves that:
- Labour must make a commitment to introduce Proportional Representation for general elections in the next manifesto.
- During its first term in office the next Labour government must change the voting system for general elections to a form of PR.
- Labour should convene an open and inclusive process to decide the specific proportional voting system it will introduce.
You can find out more about Labour For a New Democracy’s Labour conference campaign here.