Voting controversy

ALONG with, no doubt, thousands of other voters in Worthing West, I have received a letter from Sir Peter Bottomley MP, vigorously opposing the alternative vote (AV).

So much for a level playing field when it comes to the referendum.

Sir Peter cites five reasons for voting “no”.

AV he says, is “not a fair system”; it is “obscure and unpopular”, “complicated and expensive”.

But it was the fourth point that made me sit up: “AV is not a proportional system.” Quite.

So, why is the government not offering us a vote on proportional representation (PR), rather than AV?

Answer: because the Tories know that PR would reflect what the country really wants, and the Tories would stand much-diminished chances of winning future elections.

As Sir Peter well knows, “first past the post” favours Tory victories.

That’s why he is so keen to keep it.

And his fifth point: “Even the ‘yes’ campaigners don’t really want AV.” True.

They want PR, but realise AV is better than the present, biased system, so are prepared to tolerate it until we get a system that is genuinely fair all round.

C. A. Ralls

Rose Walk