This branch notes that the Westminster system is failing to represent the UK in the 21st Century.
In the Commons, the prevalence of ‘safe seats’ under Westminster’s voting system, means that once a seat is in an MP’s hands, it may be theirs for decades. It’s no wonder so many people feel disengaged from politics – in hundreds of seats, only one candidate stands a chance.
Academic research shows that First Past the Post has a right-wing bias wherever it is used, leading to parliaments and governments that are on average significantly more right-wing than the voters. In the UK, most votes went to parties to the left of the Conservatives in 19 of the last 20 general elections, yet the Tories have been in power for 63 per cent of this time.
This branch believes we need a progressive government to reshape society in the interests of workers and our communities. The current voting system offers no protection against later Conservative governments tearing up these hard-fought gains as they have in the past. The world’s most equal and progressive societies all use forms of Proportional Representation which lock in the hard-won victories of the trade union and labour movement.
This branch resolves:
• To reject First Past the Post and support the introduction of a form of Proportional Representation in which all votes count equally and seats match votes.
• To call on our trade union to do the above.