Monday 19 September 2005
Why I think that PR is not a good idea
Germany faced with days or weeks of political uncertainty after CDU wins election by only three seats.
Meanwhile, half-way around the world, New Zealand faced with days or weeks of political uncertainty after Labour Party wins election by only one seat.
In both cases, we see either a situation where a minor party representing a tiny minority of voters holds the balance of power (with the result that their policies become the policy of government) or two major but diametrically opposed parties attempt to create a government together (resulting in impasse and conflict).
In a society reliant on personality and soundbite, consensus politics seem unlikely ever to be successful. Whilst first-past-the-post is seriously flawed, I think it offers a better option than the forms of PR employed in the above two nations which are leaving them with weak government or power disproportionately offered to the smallest minorities.