Lets get the facts out first, the newly proposed system AV is not perfect its not really proportional but its better than first past the post. To be truthful I would prefer the STV system or AV+ as electoral systems but hey you get what your given by this putrid government and its remarkable that we have this referendum at all.
AV however does reflect the real world far better than first past the post elections, this is why. Every single election in recent history has allowed for a party which has minority support to run the "United Kingdom" like a fascist state, first past the post has an unfortunate quirk in multi-party elections meaning that if you have more than party they can win by having far less than 50% support.
I will give you an example of what I am talking about;
|Penzance West 2002 District Council Election.|
|Liberal Democrat||Simon Reed||479||38.2|
I won ! Yay! But lets look at the numbers 61% did not want me to be their councillor. Even though I won this was an unfair result, yes I should not have won. AV would give people a second choice, a second preference that would be truly democratic - IE the majority would have expressed some support for the winner.
Blair in 1997 had 43% support - Not a majority.
Thatcher in 1987 had 42% - Not a majority.
In fact in 1951 a government won an election with less votes than the runners up! The current system sucks.
But the real, real reason to vote yes is to piss David Cameron off. Nick Clegg is toxic as hell his days are numbered, forget him. Dave wants to have the current system because it gives his group of right wing lunatics more power than they actually deserve, it allows him to bully us like some kind of banana republic President. Give him a metaphorical slap, make George Osborne's smug grin drop of his face for a while.
Now I know that some of my fellow Cornish bloggers have made the point that this referendum is in fact a distraction from the real issue of the erosion of the Cornish border in recent changes to constituencies and that people should vote for Cornwall by spoiling their ballot paper. I agree that the changes are wrong and the choices on offer damn the Cornish border issue whatever side wins, but I would urge my fellow Cornish issue enthusiasts to consider these facts. First, spoilt ballot papers with messages never get any kind of reporting (In 2004 someone wrote next to my name "FUCK OFF" with a big arrow, a comment that disappeared into history) its a protest that registers only with those counting the ballots. Secondly, this system allows for increased electoral support for minority parties such as Mebyon Kernow or the Cornish Democrats, furthering the cause of proper recognition and devolution. Lastly, David Cameron is hammering the living crap out of Cornwall, lets annoy him for 24 hours by voting yes.
Yes2AV will in all likelihood come in 2nd tomorrow but a few more votes won't do any harm and hopefully one day we will get a fair voting system.