General Election 2015 Blog

Labour must go back to conviction politics

In many respects, Labour needed this crushing electoral defeat to rebrand and re-position, writes Ranj Alaaldin. The absence of a strong narrative of conviction from Labour allowed the party to be effectively challenged by UKIP as the party of the ordinary person and the Conservatives as the party of aspiration.
The Conservative Party has obliterated Labour and is back in government with a majority […]

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    Three more years of Cameron – but it will be a rocky road ahead

Three more years of Cameron – but it will be a rocky road ahead

Confounding the pollsters and the pundits, voters in England have given David Cameron another three years as Prime Minister, collapsed the Liberal Democrats to a shell and dashed the Labour elite’s dream of edging back into power via a minority government. Patrick Dunleavy unravels what was and was not historic in the 2015 general election results.
Expatiating on the historic resonance […]

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    The election has transformed Scottish politics, and created a context where another referendum is possible

The election has transformed Scottish politics, and created a context where another referendum is possible

The SNP have swept the electoral map in Scottish, winning all but three seats. With a Conservative government south of the border, Craig McAngus argues that the ‘significant change’ threshold put on another referendum by the SNP may now have been breached.

The SNP have won 56 of Scotland’s 59 seats. This is an unprecedented result and represents a […]

General Election liveblog

Explaining the Exit Poll

At 10pm on election day, the ballots will close, and the counting will begin. It may be many hours before it becomes clear which party has the most seats in the new parliament, and many days until we know which parties will form the next government. However, shortly after the 10 o’clock deadline, broadcasters will release a forecast based on […]

Could electoral reform really happen?

Could the results of tomorrow’s general election really lead to change in the electoral system? Many commentators seem to think yes. Alan Renwick here offers some reason for caution.

Lots of people are suddenly talking about electoral reform. Never mind that the British electorate voted by 68 per cent to 32 per cent in a referendum in 2011 against dropping First Past […]

  • Permalink Dr Françoise Boucek, party politics expert at Queen Mary, University of London, looks at what the future might hold for governments in the UK. This article was first published by QML on 12 May. As Britain’s first peace-time coalition government in 70 years begins its work today (12 May) questions are being raised about the changing nature of British politics. Is the May 2010 Westminster election a realigning election that will change the shape of British government and the nature of Britain’s democracy forever? In his 1984 seminal volume Democracies (updated in 1999) political scientist Arend Lijphart examined the main institutional rules and practices of modern democracies – such as the organisation and operation of executives, legislatures, party systems, electoral systems and the relationships between central and lower-level governments – measured on scales from majoritarian to consensus democracy. The resulting two-dimensional conceptual map of democracy contrasted the Westminster model of democracy at one end of the spectrum to the consensus model of democracy at the other end. This analysis led Lijphart to question the conventional wisdom that majoritarian democracies like those in the UK and US were superior to consensus systems like those in Switzerland and Israel. Consensus democracies turned out to be just as good as majoritarian democracies in stimulating economic growth, controlling inflation, unemployment and limiting budget deficits. But a second important conclusion was that consensus democracies outperformed majoritarian systems on measures of political equality, women’s representation, citizen participation in elections, and proximity between government policies and voter preferences. It will take many years to ascertain whether Britain is becoming a ‘kinder and gentler’ continental-type consensus democracy. However, there are clear signs already that power-sharing arrangements in the Conservative-Lib Dem coalition government under David Cameron indicate a less adversarial and more moderate style of politics. Furthermore, the strong endorsement by Bank of England Governor Mervyn King of the government’s deficit plan will reassure markets that coalition government does not necessarily mean instability and gridlock. However, electoral reform will be the real test of whether changes in party politics and democratic politics in Britain are enduring.">Gallery

    British foreign policy and the 2015 general election: Consensus on the continuity of a confused vision

British foreign policy and the 2015 general election: Consensus on the continuity of a confused vision

In place of a unifying foreign policy strategy or agenda, the main parties head into the general election with little to differentiate them and with little sense of long-term vision, writes Jonathan Gilmore. The main parties seem united in seeing an expanding horizon for a prosperous, globally influential Britain – a responsible, humane and internationalist power – but one which […]

Tactical voting and the alternative vote in 2015

The growth in minor party support in the 2015 general election looks set to create very difficult tactical voting dilemmas in some constituencies. Meg Russell reflects on how a move to the Alternative Vote (AV), which was rejected in a referendum in 2011, might have eased such dilemmas – suggesting that a messy election result could unexpectedly put AV […]