elections

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    By focusing on voter turnout, the government fails to understand the democratic process

By focusing on voter turnout, the government fails to understand the democratic process

Trade union strikes can legally go ahead if more than half the votes are in favour of action, regardless of how many members vote. The Trade Union Bill seeks to change this process by requiring that at least 50 per cent of all eligible members take part for such ballots to be legitimate. Christopher Kirkland and Matthew Wood argue […]

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    Pre-electoral coalitions increase voter turnout by making elections more decisive

Pre-electoral coalitions increase voter turnout by making elections more decisive

The UK continues to use the First Past the Post electoral system, which is more likely to result in majority governments, but less representative of voter preferences as expressed through the ballot box. It has been argued that not only are proportional systems fairer than majoritarian ones, but that they can increase turnout through making votes more consequential. Here […]

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    Granting 16 and 17 years olds the right to vote is not a panacea for youth engagement in politics, but it is necessary for democracy

Granting 16 and 17 years olds the right to vote is not a panacea for youth engagement in politics, but it is necessary for democracy

The voting age for UK general elections is 18, meaning that 16 and 17 year olds aren’t eligible to vote, despite being adults for the majority of a five year parliament. Research has shown that it would be an effective tool in narrowing the UK’s turnout gap between old and young – the widest in the OECD. Here, Michael […]

October 4th, 2015|Featured|4 Comments|
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    Voters in marginal constituencies know more about parties’ policy positions than those in safe seats

Voters in marginal constituencies know more about parties’ policy positions than those in safe seats

Britain’s first past the post electoral system means that at general elections only a minority of constituencies are likely to change hands. Voters in these marginal seats, therefore, play a critical role in determining the outcome of elections. Caitlin Milazzo has examined how well-informed voters are about their choices in marginal seats, compared to those in safe seats, and shares her […]

Governments face the voters: Elections are more difficult for incumbents in hard economic times

Analysing the election outcomes in European countries since the economic crisis began in 2008, Lawrence LeDuc and Jon Pammett find that voters do indeed broadly exact punishment on governments in times of economic crisis, although not necessarily in greater measure than might occur in other circumstances. Governing parties forced to face the electorate in bad economic times generally do not fare […]

Electorally vulnerable MPs’ outside interests appear to follow an election cycle

Politicians often implement popular changes in public policies – and avoid unpopular ones – prior to elections. Looking at the 2005-2010 legislature of the UK parliament, Benny Geys evaluates whether such ‘electioneering’ also affects politicians’ extra-parliamentary activities. He finds that only the electorally most vulnerable MPs appear to leave aside directorships prior to the election year. Politicians generally loathe alienating voters. This […]

Why the 2014 European Parliament elections will be about more than protest votes

European Parliamentary elections are due to be held in May 2014. Simon Hix and Christophe Crombez look ahead to the campaign, noting that the elections will not only provide an opportunity for Europe’s citizens to express their opinions over the handling of the Eurozone crisis, but will also allow them to take an active role in the selection of the […]

June 8th, 2013|Europp|0 Comments|

Book Review: Reforming Democracies: Six Facts About Politics That Demand A New Agenda

Any successful effort to reform democracies must look beyond conventional institutions to succeed, writes Douglas A. Chalmers in Reforming Democracies. In his examination of six aspects of political practice relating to the people being represented, the structure of those who make law and policy, and the links between those structures and the people, Chalmers’ work has the potential to inspire a movement from discussion to […]

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This work by British Politics and Policy at LSE is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported.