As for your point about AV opening the door to extreme parties, both myself and Antony Green
would beg to differ. The theory is that extreme parties actually get pushed out
because most people will preference against them. Of course, the reality is that most people blindly follow the how-to-vote card of the party they prefer, which is why One Nation won 11 seats on the back of Liberal Party and National Party preferences. In the following election they were decimated because the Coalition learnt not to underestimate them. Pauline Hanson herself also lost her seat even though she polled ahead of all the other candidates because no one would direct preferences to her. So, even though One Nation would have won fewer seats in the first election under FPTP, they would have retained more using that system in later elections. I can't comment on the BNP though, except to say that if the major parties in your country also treat it as a "pariah party" the outcome would likely be the same.I just don't think anything can improve the classic "one person, one vote" system.
I think we're all in agreement on that point! I lived in Queensland during its notorious "gerrymandering
" period so I concur most enthusiastically. That's a separate issue to AV
But I don't really want to get into a fight with you. I don't expect to change your voting intention and I doubt either of us will be having any impact on anyone's voting intention via this forum anyway. If I really cared about the subject I suppose I'd be debating this in various UK media websites, trying to give an Australian perspective, although of course the model you're voting on is not exactly the same as what we use here (except in Queensland for state elections) and in fact I'd rather adopt it than the one we have here. (That is, what you call AV we call optional preferential voting, whereas we're stuck with compulsory preferential voting, where you have to assign preferences to all the candidates to have a valid vote.)Edited at 2011-04-28 08:25 am (UTC)