Lord Jenkins's Report

David Marsay djmarsay at dera.gov.uk
Wed Nov 4 05:52:52 PST 1998

Bart Ingles wrote:
> > Lord Alexander would, however, prefer to retain FPTP for
> > constituency elections for the reasons outlined in the attached note.
> I wonder what's in the attached note?  Could it be that with the second
> (top-up) vote there is not as much need to replace FPP?

I believe that there are two concerns:
 representative members
 representative parliaments

It is impossible to achieve both simultaneously without a 
'top-up'. Almost any alternative to FPP will address the first 
concern, but make the second worse. AV / IRO is simply the obvious 
alternative to FPP in a UK context. If you are going to have a 
'top-up', one can afford to address the first concern. FPP with 
top-up, I believe, would be likely to result in the need for huge 
top-ups from minor parties. One could even get the situation (due to 
demographics) where the government is comprised mainly of top-ups. 
This is undesirable. It is hard to say what would actually happen 
because of the prevalence of tactical voting under FPP.

Lord Jenkins was instructed to retain constituency representation, 
and so did not consider straight PR.

The ability to approve of candidates and parties independently is, I 
believe, a major democratic benefit that may outweigh more technical 

Sorry, but apparently I have to do this. :-(
The views expressed above are entirely those of the writer
and do not represent the views, policy or understanding of
any other person or official body.

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