The General Election of Thursday 7 May 2015 *

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Re: The General Election of Thursday 7 May 2015 *

Post by Rhys Benjamin » Mon Apr 20, 2015 9:22 pm

Gavin Chipper wrote:So it's the next leaders debate tonight, except without Cameron or Clegg. Clegg and the Liberal Democrats have, of course, been unfairly excluded from this. Because Cameron refused to take part in more than one debate, the broadcasters allowed him to save face by billing this as an opposition debate, but that meant also excluding the Liberal Democrats as they are also in government.

I think it's a disgrace to be honest. They should have just had a leaders debate and said to Cameron "Come or don't come. It's up to you." rather than fucking over the Liberal Democrats just so that Cameron can save face.
This did turn into a farce. The 17 March proposal would have been much fairer ("minor" debate with UKIP, Greens, SNP, PC, DUP). Except Labour kicked, begged, and started jumping up and down on the table to be involved. And the BBC let them in...
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Re: The General Election of Thursday 7 May 2015 *

Post by Gavin Chipper » Mon Apr 20, 2015 9:32 pm

Rhys Benjamin wrote:
Gavin Chipper wrote:So it's the next leaders debate tonight, except without Cameron or Clegg. Clegg and the Liberal Democrats have, of course, been unfairly excluded from this. Because Cameron refused to take part in more than one debate, the broadcasters allowed him to save face by billing this as an opposition debate, but that meant also excluding the Liberal Democrats as they are also in government.

I think it's a disgrace to be honest. They should have just had a leaders debate and said to Cameron "Come or don't come. It's up to you." rather than fucking over the Liberal Democrats just so that Cameron can save face.
This did turn into a farce. The 17 March proposal would have been much fairer ("minor" debate with UKIP, Greens, SNP, PC, DUP). Except Labour kicked, begged, and started jumping up and down on the table to be involved. And the BBC let them in...
I don't see why there should have been a debate with just the "minor" parties anyway though. Fairest of all would have been a debate open to them all, and whoever wanted to turn could turn up. Instead of "Ooh, Cameron doesn't want to play, but like the good sycophants that we are, we'll contrive a format that makes it look like he was never meant to be present even if it means leaving out the Liberal Democrats as collateral damage".

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Re: The General Election of Thursday 7 May 2015 *

Post by Gavin Chipper » Mon Apr 20, 2015 10:11 pm

Graeme Cole wrote:
Gavin Chipper wrote:In the Speaker's constituency, the main parties don't even stand against him! An arbitrary tradition is seen as more important than voters' democratic rights!
It's up to each individual party whether they choose to field a candidate in a constituency - nobody can force them to.
Just another point on this - although no-one can force parties to stand and obviously independents and smaller parties can stand against the Speaker, the message they are sending out is important. The message being that the Speaker should be allowed to stand and be re-elected to Parliament unopposed. This message is both arrogant and anti-democratic.

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Re: The General Election of Thursday 7 May 2015 *

Post by Gavin Chipper » Wed Apr 22, 2015 11:00 pm

Andy McGurn wrote:Its interesting that this forum has members who support the Conservatives as well as members who support Labour and doubtless some neutrals and nonvoters as well. But do we have any UKIP supporters here.
Steven?
I suppose it would be interesting to have a poll. But that would presumably mean starting a new thread. Maybe the thread starter can add a poll once the thread is already open? I don't know.

Edit - I just went to one of my threads and it appears that you can add a poll later. So, Jim if you're reading this, go for it!

So I suppose the options would be Conservative, Labour etc. (whichever parties are considered main enough), other party, an independent, dunno yet, spoiling ballot, deciding not to turn up, not allowed to vote (for age, nationality or other reasons), generally other. Anything else?

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Re: The General Election of Thursday 7 May 2015 *

Post by Ian Fitzpatrick » Thu Apr 23, 2015 9:49 am

UKIP delivered me a pamphlet yesterday together with a plea to put a sign in the window - unfortunately (for them) all the details were about a candidate standing in the adjacent constituency!
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Re: The General Election of Thursday 7 May 2015 *

Post by Gavin Chipper » Thu Apr 23, 2015 12:07 pm

Things definitely seem to be moving in the direction of Labour. With 1.69 to back and 1.71 to lay, Miliband is reckoned to have about 58.5%-59.2% chance of being Prime Minister. It's not exactly decisive, but there has been a gradual move in that direction for a while.

We'll see what levels of intellectual dishonesty and negative campaigning Cameron will stoop to.

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Re: The General Election of Thursday 7 May 2015 *

Post by Ian Volante » Thu Apr 23, 2015 12:09 pm

Aye, the blues need another 15+ seats or so I reckon to have a better chance than the reds of forming a viable mob.
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Re: The General Election of Thursday 7 May 2015 *

Post by Jennifer Steadman » Thu Apr 23, 2015 6:50 pm

Has everyone seen and appreciated the '#milifandom'? Easily the most entertaining thing to happen so far in the election (followed by "hell yeah, I'm tough" and the Grant Shapps thing - if true). Who's starting the Gevin fandom?
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Re: The General Election of Thursday 7 May 2015 *

Post by Rhys Benjamin » Fri Apr 24, 2015 10:20 pm

A Labour government. Higher taxes. Higher debt. A worse future for the next generation.

Hell? Yes.
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Re: The General Election of Thursday 7 May 2015 *

Post by Ian Volante » Sat Apr 25, 2015 9:19 am

Rhys Benjamin wrote:A Labour government. Higher taxes. Higher debt. A worse future for the next generation.

Hell? Yes.
I'm not entirely sure that anyone in here particularly will be swayed by tedious sloganeering. But you keep shouting by all means.
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Re: The General Election of Thursday 7 May 2015 *

Post by Gavin Chipper » Sat Apr 25, 2015 11:35 am

I had a hustings last night. Interesting experience. I largely got across the points I wanted to make but being in a church they came across as very Christian and very Conservative. They didn't like what I had to say about secularism and faith schools at all.

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Re: The General Election of Thursday 7 May 2015 *

Post by Zarte Siempre » Sat Apr 25, 2015 12:11 pm

Ian Volante wrote:
Rhys Benjamin wrote:A Labour government. Higher taxes. Higher debt. A worse future for the next generation.

Hell? Yes.
I'm not entirely sure that anyone in here particularly will be swayed by tedious sloganeering. But you keep shouting by all means.
+1
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Re: The General Election of Thursday 7 May 2015 *

Post by Gavin Chipper » Mon Apr 27, 2015 10:37 pm

So what do we make of the Liberal Democrats saying that the party that gets the most seats should have the priority to making a government? Given that it's likely to be the Tories, it sounds like they're saying they prefer the Tories to Labour! Otherwise, there's no logic to their position. If there is a majority in the house that is broadly left, regardless of whether any individual party among them has the most seats, is it not correct that they should make the government?* In fact, to argue otherwise is basically to argue for First Past the Post over AV, so it's not a tenable position for the Liberal Democrats.

*Assuming that we accept the general idea that it's OK for a group of 50%+ of MPs to team together and say "If we all vote the same way on everything, even if we don't always agree on everything, we can simply shut out the rest of the democratically MPs altogether like they don't even exist!"

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Re: The General Election of Thursday 7 May 2015 *

Post by Ian Volante » Tue Apr 28, 2015 8:09 am

Gavin Chipper wrote:So what do we make of the Liberal Democrats saying that the party that gets the most seats should have the priority to making a government? Given that it's likely to be the Tories, it sounds like they're saying they prefer the Tories to Labour! Otherwise, there's no logic to their position. If there is a majority in the house that is broadly left, regardless of whether any individual party among them has the most seats, is it not correct that they should make the government?* In fact, to argue otherwise is basically to argue for First Past the Post over AV, so it's not a tenable position for the Liberal Democrats.

*Assuming that we accept the general idea that it's OK for a group of 50%+ of MPs to team together and say "If we all vote the same way on everything, even if we don't always agree on everything, we can simply shut out the rest of the democratically MPs altogether like they don't even exist!"
The current system might be bollocks, but allowing the biggest party first shot at forming the government makes perfect sense. The perceived political make-up of the rest of the chamber should be irrelevant. If the Tories had 250 seats, and 348 small leftish parties had one seat each, and one other had managed to garner two seats in this potentially entertaining parliament, then by your logic, the two-seat party would have first go.

I don't see why this conflicts with a proportional system. I think even that incumbency has more validity than political leaning, and I don't think there's any reason for the sitting PM to vacate #10 until negotiations have concluded, even if they're in an apparently untenable position.
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Re: The General Election of Thursday 7 May 2015 *

Post by Clive Brooker » Tue Apr 28, 2015 8:37 am

Gavin Chipper wrote:So what do we make of the Liberal Democrats saying that the party that gets the most seats should have the priority to making a government?
The LibDems are expected to be the 4th largest in terms of seats this time, and if they want to be at the forefront of negotiations they'll need to position themselves carefully. If it's really borderline, something like Con > Lab, Lab+SNP < 323, Con+LD < Lab+SNP, then this argument might help them, and I don't blame them for trying. More likely the actual numbers will give one side the edge, overriding any supposedly established principles.

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Re: The General Election of Thursday 7 May 2015 *

Post by Gavin Chipper » Thu Apr 30, 2015 9:33 am

Ian Volante wrote:
Gavin Chipper wrote:So what do we make of the Liberal Democrats saying that the party that gets the most seats should have the priority to making a government? Given that it's likely to be the Tories, it sounds like they're saying they prefer the Tories to Labour! Otherwise, there's no logic to their position. If there is a majority in the house that is broadly left, regardless of whether any individual party among them has the most seats, is it not correct that they should make the government?* In fact, to argue otherwise is basically to argue for First Past the Post over AV, so it's not a tenable position for the Liberal Democrats.

*Assuming that we accept the general idea that it's OK for a group of 50%+ of MPs to team together and say "If we all vote the same way on everything, even if we don't always agree on everything, we can simply shut out the rest of the democratically MPs altogether like they don't even exist!"
The current system might be bollocks, but allowing the biggest party first shot at forming the government makes perfect sense. The perceived political make-up of the rest of the chamber should be irrelevant. If the Tories had 250 seats, and 348 small leftish parties had one seat each, and one other had managed to garner two seats in this potentially entertaining parliament, then by your logic, the two-seat party would have first go.

I don't see why this conflicts with a proportional system. I think even that incumbency has more validity than political leaning, and I don't think there's any reason for the sitting PM to vacate #10 until negotiations have concluded, even if they're in an apparently untenable position.
Well, personally I think this "first go" thing is a bit of a red herring. It doesn't make any difference really. E.g. if Labour + SNP makes a majority between them, then there's nothing the Tories can do to get a majority. Obviously if either Tories + Lib Dems or Labour + Lib Dems make a majority, then the Lib Dems can make this decision. As a party they can always offer to go into a coalition with the biggest party, but they can't inflict this principle on anyone else.

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Re: The General Election of Thursday 7 May 2015 *

Post by Ian Volante » Thu Apr 30, 2015 11:56 am

Gavin Chipper wrote:
Ian Volante wrote:
Gavin Chipper wrote:So what do we make of the Liberal Democrats saying that the party that gets the most seats should have the priority to making a government? Given that it's likely to be the Tories, it sounds like they're saying they prefer the Tories to Labour! Otherwise, there's no logic to their position. If there is a majority in the house that is broadly left, regardless of whether any individual party among them has the most seats, is it not correct that they should make the government?* In fact, to argue otherwise is basically to argue for First Past the Post over AV, so it's not a tenable position for the Liberal Democrats.

*Assuming that we accept the general idea that it's OK for a group of 50%+ of MPs to team together and say "If we all vote the same way on everything, even if we don't always agree on everything, we can simply shut out the rest of the democratically MPs altogether like they don't even exist!"
The current system might be bollocks, but allowing the biggest party first shot at forming the government makes perfect sense. The perceived political make-up of the rest of the chamber should be irrelevant. If the Tories had 250 seats, and 348 small leftish parties had one seat each, and one other had managed to garner two seats in this potentially entertaining parliament, then by your logic, the two-seat party would have first go.

I don't see why this conflicts with a proportional system. I think even that incumbency has more validity than political leaning, and I don't think there's any reason for the sitting PM to vacate #10 until negotiations have concluded, even if they're in an apparently untenable position.
Well, personally I think this "first go" thing is a bit of a red herring. It doesn't make any difference really. E.g. if Labour + SNP makes a majority between them, then there's nothing the Tories can do to get a majority. Obviously if either Tories + Lib Dems or Labour + Lib Dems make a majority, then the Lib Dems can make this decision. As a party they can always offer to go into a coalition with the biggest party, but they can't inflict this principle on anyone else.
Cameron's occupancy of #10 will make it appear that the Tories have first go, even though negotiations are all probably going to be running concurrently. But aye, quite probably irrelevant.
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Re: The General Election of Thursday 7 May 2015 *

Post by JimBentley » Mon Oct 26, 2015 7:56 pm

Now that this is all over (with a result that I don't think anyone expected), here's some alternative scenarios based on my figures, which are more accurate than anyone else's (honestly, the electoral reporting system in this country is fucking bollocks).

WARNING: Unless you're Gevin, probably stop reading here. Christ, even Gevin might not be interested. This is very much tl;dr.

CURRENT FPTP SYSTEM by country (NI excluded):

Wales (total 40 seats)

Conservatives 407,813 votes (27.2%) - Actual seats won: 11
Labour 552,473 votes (36.9%) - Actual seats won: 25
Plaid Cymru 181,704 votes (12.1%) - Actual seats won: 3
Lib Dem 97,783 votes (6.5%) - Actual seats won: 1
UKIP 204,330 votes (13.6%) - Actual seats won: 0
Green 38,344 (3.6%) - Actual seats won 0

Scotland (total 59 seats)

SNP 1,454,436 votes (50.0%) - Actual seats won: 56
Conservatives 449,264 votes (15.4%) - Actual seats won: 1
Labour 691,980 votes (23.8%) - Actual seats won: 1
Lib Dem 219,675 votes (7.6%) - Actual seats won: 1
UKIP 47.078 votes (1.6%) - Actual seats won: 0
Green 39,205 (1.4%) - Actual seats won 0

England (total 533 seats)

Conservatives 10,483,321 votes (41.0%) - Actual seats won: 319
Labour 8.087.164 votes (31.7%) - Actual seats won: 206
Lib Dem 2,089,404 votes (8.2%) - Actual seats won: 6
UKIP 3,611,260 votes (14.1%) - Actual seats won: 1
Green 1,073,260 (4.2%) - Actual seats won 1

FPTP Overall (total 632 seats)

Conservative 331 - Labour 232 - SNP 56 - Lib Dem 8 - Plaid 3 - UKIP 1 - Green 1



PURE PROPORTIONAL REPRESENTATION by country

Wales (total 40 seats)

Conservatives 407,813 votes (27.2%) - Seats won under PR: 11
Labour 552,473 votes (36.9%) - Seats won under PR: 15
Plaid Cymru 181,704 votes (12.1%) - Seats won under PR: 5
Lib Dem 97,783 votes (6.5%) - Seats won under PR: 3
UKIP 204,330 votes (13.6%) - Seats won under PR: 5
Green 38,344 (3.6%) - Seats won under PR: 1

Scotland (total 59 seats)

SNP 1,454,436 votes (50.0%) - Seats won under PR: 30
Conservatives 449,264 votes (15.4%) - Seats won under PR: 9
Labour 691,980 votes (23.8%) - Seats won under PR: 14
Lib Dem 219,675 votes (7.6%) - Seats won under PR: 4
UKIP 47.078 votes (1.6%) - Seats won under PR: 1
Green 39,205 (1.4%) - Seats won under PR: 1

England (total 533 seats)

Conservatives 10,483,321 votes (41.0%) - Seats won under PR: 219
Labour 8.087.164 votes (31.7%) - Seats won under PR: 169
Lib Dem 2,089,404 votes (8.2%) - Seats won under PR: 45
UKIP 3,611,260 votes (14.1%) - Seats won under PR: 76
Green 1,073,260 (4.2%) - Seats won under PR: 23
TUSC/Left Unity (0.1%) - Seats won under PR: 1

There is a slight skewing in the England results due to the large number of spoilt ballots (under a pure PR system, spoilt ballots would have two seats of their own). TUSC strictly speaking would only be entitled to 0.69 of a seat, so I rounded this up, the other went to the Lib Dems as they would be next closest to gaining another (well, they had to go somewhere).

Pure PR Overall (total 632 seats)

Conservative 239 - Labour 198 - SNP 30 - Lib Dem 52 - Plaid 5 - UKIP 82 - Green 25 - TUSC 1



The above two systems restrain the total number of English/Welsh/Scottish MPs to 632, but alternative systems could be used. As it would be guesswork to try to predict a result under AV, the only other obvious thing to look at is a system that generated MPs according to minimum percentage of the vote by constituency, This would reflect more honestly the views of the electorate, but would necessitate an increase in the number of MPs; most seats would have one MP, but a good number would have two and possibly even three (although this would be a bit of a freak result).


MINIMUM PERCENTAGE VOTING by country

Wales (number of seats 40, number of MPs variable according to vote share)

27.5% requirement: Conservative 17 - Labour 33 - Lib Dem 3 - Plaid 5 - UKIP 0 - Green 0 (58 Welsh MPs)

30.0% requirement: Conservative 17 - Labour 30 - Lib Dem 1 - Plaid 4 - UKIP 0 - Green 0 (52 Welsh MPs)

32.5% requirement: Conservative 13 - Labour 28 - Lib Dem 1 - Plaid 3 - UKIP 0 - Green 0 (45 Welsh MPs)

Scotland (number of seats 59, number of MPs variable according to vote share)

27.5% requirement: Conservative 10 - Labour 31 - Lib Dem 9 - SNP 59 - UKIP 0 - Green 0 (109 Scottish MPs)

30.0% requirement: Conservative 5 - Labour 24 - Lib Dem 8 - SNP 59 - UKIP 0 - Green 0 (96 Scottish MPs)

32.5% requirement: Conservative 4 - Labour 10 - Lib Dem 6 - SNP 59 - UKIP 0 - Green 0 (79 Scottish MPs)

England (number of seats 533, number of MPs variable according to vote share)

27.5% requirement: Conservative 395 - Labour 292 - Lib Dem 30 - UKIP 11 - Green 1 (729 English MPs)

30.0% requirement: Conservative 380 - Labour 280 - Lib Dem 22 - UKIP 8 - Green 1 (691 English MPs)

32.5% requirement: Conservative 365 - Labour 267 - Lib Dem 18 - UKIP 2 - Green 1 (653 English MPs)


Overall (number of seats 632, number of MPs variable according to vote share)

27.5% required: Conservative 422 - Labour 356 - SNP 59 - Lib Dem 42 - UKIP 11 - Plaid 5 - Green 1 (896 MPs)

30.0% required: Conservative 402 - Labour 334 - SNP 59 - Lib Dem 31 - UKIP 8 - Plaid 4 - Green 1 (839 MPs)

32.5% required: Conservative 382 - Labour 305 - SNP 59 - Lib Dem 25 - Plaid 3 - UKIP 2 - Green 1 (777 MPs)



Interesting, eh? No. Oh well.

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Re: The General Election of Thursday 7 May 2015 *

Post by Jon O'Neill » Tue Oct 27, 2015 12:43 pm

I'd like to see a Powerpoint on these at COLIN.

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Re: The General Election of Thursday 7 May 2015 *

Post by JimBentley » Tue Oct 27, 2015 4:49 pm

Jon O'Neill wrote:I'd like to see a Powerpoint on these at COLIN.
Careful what you wish for baby, there's loads more where that came from.

Oh, the thing I forgot to mention: Of the 254 genuinely independent candidates that I identified (there were a lot more than that, but I categorised the obviously-affiliated-to-a-party ones elsewhere), Gevin's valiant stand in Braintree puts him in the top third of all independents (ranked 75th by number of votes received, 78th by vote share). Hurrah!

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Re: The General Election of Thursday 7 May 2015 *

Post by Gavin Chipper » Tue Oct 27, 2015 9:38 pm

I'm back from my holiday to America now so I will reply to this.

Interesting analysis, Jim. Why have you excluded Northern Ireland by the way? Also, you could do pure proportional representation not by country. Should the SNP get more seats than they are overall proportionally entitled to because their support is in one small area?

Your minimum requirement thing - You consider this an obvious thing to do? So you're saying that every candidate who gets over the threshold is elected? As well as 1, 2 and 3, you could have a constituency with 0 MPs elected. But as you alluded to, it's difficult to do analysis of what results you'd get under many other electoral systems, because the information doesn't exist.
JimBentley wrote:There is a slight skewing in the England results due to the large number of spoilt ballots (under a pure PR system, spoilt ballots would have two seats of their own). TUSC strictly speaking would only be entitled to 0.69 of a seat, so I rounded this up, the other went to the Lib Dems as they would be next closest to gaining another (well, they had to go somewhere).
So the percentages included the spoilt ballots in the total? Is this how it's usually measured? But regardless of this, you'd still have to decide who to round up and who to round down unless the percentages always exactly match an exact number of seats. This is an equivalent problem to deciding how many representatives each state in the US should get and if you're not careful you get things like this happening.
JimBentley wrote:Oh, the thing I forgot to mention: Of the 254 genuinely independent candidates that I identified (there were a lot more than that, but I categorised the obviously-affiliated-to-a-party ones elsewhere), Gevin's valiant stand in Braintree puts him in the top third of all independents (ranked 75th by number of votes received, 78th by vote share). Hurrah!
Nice. I had no idea about that.

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Re: The General Election of Thursday 7 May 2015 *

Post by JimBentley » Tue Oct 27, 2015 9:59 pm

Gavin Chipper wrote:I'm back from my holiday to America now so I will reply to this.

Interesting analysis, Jim. Why have you excluded Northern Ireland by the way?
I wondered about this but just gave up in the end, as it's a separate election entirely. There aren't many candidates at all not affiliated one way or the other to some religious thing, so it would effectively just mean a lot more work for nothing. The percentage of spoilt ballots in Northern Ireland is jaw-dropping (six times the ratio of Scotland, more than twice as many as England and Wales) and maybe I was being lazy, but I didn't really know where to put them.
Gavin Chipper wrote:Also, you could do pure proportional representation not by country. Should the SNP get more seats than they are overall proportionally entitled to because their support is in one small area?
Proportional representation by the whole thing is silly, as the SNP only stood in the 59 Scottish seats and Plaid only stood in the 40 Welsh seats, whereas the others (Conservative, Labour, UKIP and (less so) Green) generally stood everywhere).
Gavin Chipper wrote:Your minimum requirement thing - You consider this an obvious thing to do? So you're saying that every candidate who gets over the threshold is elected? As well as 1, 2 and 3, you could have a constituency with 0 MPs elected.
No, that was kind of the point. If we're going to keep the constituency system, you have to set the threshold so that every seat has at least one MP. In this election that happened to be Southport, where Lib Dem John Pugh held his seat with just 30.96% of the vote. So anything less than 30.96% requirement would leave a seat without an MP.
JimBentley wrote:There is a slight skewing in the England results due to the large number of spoilt ballots (under a pure PR system, spoilt ballots would have two seats of their own). TUSC strictly speaking would only be entitled to 0.69 of a seat, so I rounded this up, the other went to the Lib Dems as they would be next closest to gaining another (well, they had to go somewhere).
Gavin Chipper wrote:So the percentages included the spoilt ballots in the total? Is this how it's usually measured?
No. I got pissed off last time trying to track down exactly how many there were, and where they were, so this time I got the information by hook or by crook. I can't guarantee 100% accuracy but I know I'm much closer than any of the newspapers or polling organisations. Spoilt ballots are important and should be recorded properly.

Edited to say: if anyone (Gevin) wants any data on seats or parties or anything, feel free to ask. I've got data on...almost everything.

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Re: The General Election of Thursday 7 May 2015 *

Post by Gavin Chipper » Sun Nov 01, 2015 6:58 pm

JimBentley wrote:
Gavin Chipper wrote:Also, you could do pure proportional representation not by country. Should the SNP get more seats than they are overall proportionally entitled to because their support is in one small area?
Proportional representation by the whole thing is silly, as the SNP only stood in the 59 Scottish seats and Plaid only stood in the 40 Welsh seats, whereas the others (Conservative, Labour, UKIP and (less so) Green) generally stood everywhere).
I don't think it's silly. Should a party (e.g. SNP) win more seats just because their votes are clustered into a small area? Also, you can still do a dispassionate analysis of the results without agreeing that this is the way it should be done. After all, you had to do an analysis on an election that used a voting system that was not fit for purpose regardless of how you analyse it.

Edit - It's also up to the SNP if they want to field candidates in a small area. If an Essex Independence Party won all the seats in Essex, would you separate out Essex in your PR model? Probably not because Essex isn't a nation like Scotland is, but even so, this is a general election for the UK, and Scotland has no particular significance in that respect.
JimBentley wrote:
Gavin Chipper wrote:Your minimum requirement thing - You consider this an obvious thing to do? So you're saying that every candidate who gets over the threshold is elected? As well as 1, 2 and 3, you could have a constituency with 0 MPs elected.
No, that was kind of the point. If we're going to keep the constituency system, you have to set the threshold so that every seat has at least one MP. In this election that happened to be Southport, where Lib Dem John Pugh held his seat with just 30.96% of the vote. So anything less than 30.96% requirement would leave a seat without an MP.
So in your 32.5% thing, Southport had no MP? Is 30.96% really the lowest percentage for a winning candidate? It seems quite high.
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Gavin Chipper wrote:So the percentages included the spoilt ballots in the total? Is this how it's usually measured?
No. I got pissed off last time trying to track down exactly how many there were, and where they were, so this time I got the information by hook or by crook. I can't guarantee 100% accuracy but I know I'm much closer than any of the newspapers or polling organisations. Spoilt ballots are important and should be recorded properly.
They are important, but then so are no-shows. I'm not sure I regard them with much difference myself. Plus when you're handing out seats (which is what you were doing with your data), unless you're going to hand out seats to the spoilt ballot party, it makes sense to use the figures that don't include the spoilt ballots anyway.

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Re: The General Election of Thursday 7 May 2015 *

Post by JimBentley » Tue Nov 03, 2015 10:17 am

Gavin Chipper wrote:I don't think it's silly. Should a party (e.g. SNP) win more seats just because their votes are clustered into a small area? Also, you can still do a dispassionate analysis of the results without agreeing that this is the way it should be done. After all, you had to do an analysis on an election that used a voting system that was not fit for purpose regardless of how you analyse it...Edit - It's also up to the SNP if they want to field candidates in a small area. If an Essex Independence Party won all the seats in Essex, would you separate out Essex in your PR model? Probably not because Essex isn't a nation like Scotland is, but even so, this is a general election for the UK, and Scotland has no particular significance in that respect.
I did all those things, just didn't think it was very relevant that the SNP got 4.85% and Plaid 0.61% across the board (but as you say that's a problem of the voting system).

Of the regionalist parties, then I suppose I could give their support across the seats in which they stood, but none of them really get enough support to make much of a difference anyway: Mebyon Kernow got 1.92% across their seats, Lincolnshire Independents 1.90%, Yorkshire Party 1.05%, Northern Party 0.30% and North East Party 1.39%.
Gavin Chipper wrote:Your minimum requirement thing ... Is 30.96% really the lowest percentage for a winning candidate? It seems quite high.
I was epecting lower, tbh, but yes it was. I was expecting someone to be elected with under 30%. Even in the 3-way marginal Thurrock the result was CON 33.68% - LAB 32.60% - UKIP 31.71%.
Gavin Chipper wrote:So the percentages included the spoilt ballots in the total? Is this how it's usually measured?...They are important, but then so are no-shows. I'm not sure I regard them with much difference myself.
But no-shows don't have to do anything. Actually going to the polling station to deliberately spoil you ballot is surely completely different? If voting was compulsory then I could see where you're coming from.

Anyway, I think spoiled ballots are interesting in themselves (also, if I hypothetically wanted to rig an election, I would do it via manipulation of spoilt ballots). Now, I'm not suggesting that anything like that happened, but it's interesting that in three seats (Gower, Derby South and City of Chester), there were more spoiled ballots than the winning candidate's majority.

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Re: The General Election of Thursday 7 May 2015 *

Post by Rhys Benjamin » Tue Nov 03, 2015 5:46 pm

JimBentley wrote:
Gavin Chipper wrote:I'm back from my holiday to America now so I will reply to this.

Interesting analysis, Jim. Why have you excluded Northern Ireland by the way?
I wondered about this but just gave up in the end, as it's a separate election entirely. There aren't many candidates at all not affiliated one way or the other to some religious thing, so it would effectively just mean a lot more work for nothing. The percentage of spoilt ballots in Northern Ireland is jaw-dropping (six times the ratio of Scotland, more than twice as many as England and Wales) and maybe I was being lazy, but I didn't really know where to put them.
Just to stop you here, didn't the Conservatives also stand in Northern Ireland?

And this is fantastic analysis, except the Conservative vote total appears to be out. BBC report 11,334,576, yet your figures seem to come to 11,340,398? Sorry to be so anal about it, but just one vote could make all the difference, etc, etc.
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Re: The General Election of Thursday 7 May 2015 *

Post by JimBentley » Tue Nov 03, 2015 6:05 pm

Rhys Benjamin wrote:Just to stop you here, didn't the Conservatives also stand in Northern Ireland?

And this is fantastic analysis, except the Conservative vote total appears to be out. BBC report 11,334,576, yet your figures seem to come to 11,340,398? Sorry to be so anal about it, but just one vote could make all the difference, etc, etc.
Thanks Rhys. I didn't do Northern Ireland, because I didn't really understand it. You're right in that the Northern Ireland Conservative Party did stand, but as far as I can see only got 1.3% of the poll; I think Conservative voters in NI are more likely to vote UUP or DUP, but as I say, I don't really know enough to comment and certainly couldn't integrate the results into the larger picture.

As I said before, this is going to sound arrogant, but I'm willing to bet that my figures are more accurate than those you can find on any media outlet (and anyway, the BBC figures that you linked to include Northern Ireland).

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Re: The General Election of Thursday 7 May 2015 *

Post by Gavin Chipper » Tue Nov 03, 2015 6:36 pm

Jon O'Neill wrote:I'd like to see a Powerpoint on these at COLIN.
I'm looking forward to this.

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Re: The General Election of Thursday 7 May 2015 *

Post by JimBentley » Tue Nov 03, 2015 11:12 pm

Gavin Chipper wrote:
Jon O'Neill wrote:I'd like to see a Powerpoint on these at COLIN.
I'm looking forward to this.
You know. I have never really used Powerpoint. I've probably got an old version somewhere, but I've never done anything with it.

I'd like to do something with lasers.

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Re: The General Election of Thursday 7 May 2015 *

Post by Mark James » Wed Nov 04, 2015 3:32 pm

JimBentley wrote:
Gavin Chipper wrote:
Jon O'Neill wrote:I'd like to see a Powerpoint on these at COLIN.
I'm looking forward to this.
You know. I have never really used Powerpoint. I've probably got an old version somewhere, but I've never done anything with it.

I'd like to do something with lasers.
You should try https://prezi.com/

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Re: The General Election of Thursday 7 May 2015 *

Post by JimBentley » Mon Jan 25, 2016 8:38 pm

Old news now but prompted by a highly confidential email exchange between myself and one of the 2015 candidates for the parliamentary constituency of Braintree, here's a quick list of all everyone in the 2015 election who either just saved or just lost their deposit (I've taken that to be getting between 4.90% and 5.10% of the vote):

Labour (Kenryck Lloyd-Jones) would have saved his deposit with 52 more votes in Berwickshire, Roxburgh and Selkirk
Green (Rhodri Griffiths) would have saved his deposit with 41 more votes in Suffolk Central and Ipswich North
Green (Richard Lawson) would have saved his deposit with 36 more votes in Weston-Super-Mare
UKIP (Barry Edwards) would have saved his deposit with 32 more votes in Twickenham
Green (Claire Allen) would have saved her deposit with 31 more votes in Preston
Green (Alexander Johnson) would have saved his deposit with 31 more votes in Newcastle upon Tyne Central
Lib Dem (Matthew Klesel) would have saved his deposit with 27 more votes in Braintree
Lib Dem (Mike Cox) would have saved his deposit with 26 more votes in Uxbridge and South Ruislip
Lib Dem (Joshua Dixon) would have saved his deposit with 25 more votes in Ruislip, Northwood and Pinner
Lib Dem (Haseeb Arif) would have saved his deposit with 18 more votes in Warwick and Leamington
Lib Dem (Nigel Howells) would have saved his deposit with 16 more votes in Cardiff South and Penarth
Lib Dem (Alisdair Calder McGregor) would have saved his deposit with 12 more votes in Calder Valley
Conservative (Gordon McCaskill) would have saved his deposit with 11 more votes in Glasgow South West
UKIP (Nigel Carter) would have saved his deposit with 10 more votes in Brighton Pavilion
Plaid (Martin Pollard) would have saved his deposit with 8 more votes in Cardiff Central
Lib Dem (Steve Beasant) would have saved his deposit with 7 more votes in Great Grimsby
UKIP (Maxine Spencer) would have saved her deposit with 6 more votes in Holborn and St Pancras
Lib Dem (Paul Lorber) would have saved his deposit with 5 more votes in Brent North
Liberal (Steve Radford) would have saved his deposit with 3 more votes in Liverpool West Derby
Lib Dem (Simon de Deney) would have saved his deposit with 3 more votes in Hackney North and Stoke Newington
Lib Dem (Yahaya Kiingi) would have lost his deposit with 2 fewer votes in Camberwell and Peckham
Green (Adam Van Coevorden) would have lost his deposit with 3 fewer votes in Cheltenham
Lib Dem (Elfreda Tealby-Watson) would have lost her deposit with 4 fewer votes in Suffolk West
Lib Dem (Bart Ricketts) would have lost his deposit with 4 fewer votes in Bromsgrove
Green (Chris Coates) would have lost his deposit with 7 fewer votes in Lancaster and Fleetwood
UKIP (Daniel Oxley) would have lost his deposit with 8 fewer votes in East Ham
Lib Dem (Ade Adeyemo) would have lost his deposit with 8 fewer votes in Meriden
UKIP (Clair Braund) would have lost her deposit with 10 fewer votes in Birmingham Ladywood
Green (Rachel Collinson) would have lost her deposit with 12 fewer votes in West Ham
Green (Simon Cross) would have lost his deposit with 15 fewer votes in Rochford and Southend East
Independent (Ken Martin) would have lost his deposit with 22 fewer votes in Maldon
Green (Robina Rose) would have lost her deposit with 24 fewer votes in Kensington
Lib Dem (Bob Johnston) would have lost his deposit with 25 fewer votes in Rushcliffe
Green (Ashley Wakeling) would have lost his deposit with 27 fewer votes in Swansea West
UKIP (Adrian Noble) would have lost his deposit with 28 fewer votes in Chelsea and Fulham
Green (Janet Phillips) would have lost her deposit with 32 fewer votes in Ludlow
Green (Clare Thomas) would have lost her deposit with 37 fewer votes in Birmingham Selly Oak
Lib Dem (Peter Maughan) would have lost his deposit with 39 fewer votes in Durham North
Green (James Abbott) would have lost his deposit with 46 fewer votes in Witney
Green (Jonathan Kent) would have lost his deposit with 47 fewer votes in Bexhill and Battle

Interesting eh?

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Re: The General Election of Thursday 7 May 2015 *

Post by Gavin Chipper » Mon Jan 25, 2016 11:12 pm

Yes. That is interesting. That's actually quite a lot. I make that 40. And with 650 constituencies, that's over 6% to fall in quite a narrow range.

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Re: The General Election of Thursday 7 May 2015 *

Post by JimBentley » Tue Jan 26, 2016 3:10 pm

Gavin Chipper wrote:Yes. That is interesting. That's actually quite a lot. I make that 40. And with 650 constituencies, that's over 6% to fall in quite a narrow range.
Couple of things; it's only 632 constituencies (I didn't do Northern Ireland) and while 40 candidates fell into the range, that was from a total of 3,833 standing in those seats, so really only just over 1%. But I agree, that's still quite a high proportion to fall into this small range.

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Re: The General Election of Thursday 7 May 2015 *

Post by Mark Deeks » Tue Jan 26, 2016 3:20 pm

Lib Dem (Matthew Klesel) would have saved his deposit with 27 more votes in Braintree
Oof. No wonder he looked so gutted.
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Re: The General Election of Thursday 7 May 2015 *

Post by Gavin Chipper » Tue Jan 26, 2016 4:41 pm

Mark Deeks wrote:
Lib Dem (Matthew Klesel) would have saved his deposit with 27 more votes in Braintree
Oof. No wonder he looked so gutted.
I thought you watched the video where this was mentioned. I seem to remember you even commented on Facebook.

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Re: The General Election of Thursday 7 May 2015 *

Post by Mark Deeks » Tue Jan 26, 2016 4:54 pm

Even as your Campaign Manager, I have a life outside of you.
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Re: The General Election of Thursday 7 May 2015 *

Post by Gavin Chipper » Mon Jun 20, 2016 8:44 pm

JimBentley wrote:
Jon O'Neill wrote:I'd like to see a Powerpoint on these at COLIN.
Careful what you wish for baby, there's loads more where that came from.

Oh, the thing I forgot to mention: Of the 254 genuinely independent candidates that I identified (there were a lot more than that, but I categorised the obviously-affiliated-to-a-party ones elsewhere), Gevin's valiant stand in Braintree puts him in the top third of all independents (ranked 75th by number of votes received, 78th by vote share). Hurrah!
Jim, where did you get the figure for independent candidates? I read in a couple of places that there were 170.

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Re: The General Election of Thursday 7 May 2015 *

Post by JimBentley » Tue Jun 21, 2016 2:39 pm

Gavin Chipper wrote:
JimBentley wrote:
Jon O'Neill wrote:I'd like to see a Powerpoint on these at COLIN.
Careful what you wish for baby, there's loads more where that came from.

Oh, the thing I forgot to mention: Of the 254 genuinely independent candidates that I identified (there were a lot more than that, but I categorised the obviously-affiliated-to-a-party ones elsewhere), Gevin's valiant stand in Braintree puts him in the top third of all independents (ranked 75th by number of votes received, 78th by vote share). Hurrah!
Jim, where did you get the figure for independent candidates? I read in a couple of places that there were 170.
To be honest, it was really down to how you categorised them and my method was as arbitrary as anyone else's. I'd imagine that my figure is higher than 170 because I included quite a few "named parties" who had only one or two candidates (for instance "None Of The Above"). That said, I split my 254 down into sub-categories (e.g. non-affiliated left-wing, non-affiliated right-wing, single issue, a couple of others I can't remember) and had 174 that I couldn't otherwise categorise, so your figure of 170 is intriguing. Can you remember where it was from?

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Re: The General Election of Thursday 7 May 2015 *

Post by Gavin Chipper » Tue Jun 21, 2016 2:53 pm

JimBentley wrote:To be honest, it was really down to how you categorised them and my method was as arbitrary as anyone else's. I'd imagine that my figure is higher than 170 because I included quite a few "named parties" who had only one or two candidates (for instance "None Of The Above"). That said, I split my 254 down into sub-categories (e.g. non-affiliated left-wing, non-affiliated right-wing, single issue, a couple of others I can't remember) and had 174 that I couldn't otherwise categorise, so your figure of 170 is intriguing. Can you remember where it was from?
A few places. This Guardian article, this tweet, this Wikipedia article, and this report thing.

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Re: The General Election of Thursday 7 May 2015 *

Post by JimBentley » Tue Jun 21, 2016 3:27 pm

Gavin Chipper wrote:
JimBentley wrote:To be honest, it was really down to how you categorised them and my method was as arbitrary as anyone else's. I'd imagine that my figure is higher than 170 because I included quite a few "named parties" who had only one or two candidates (for instance "None Of The Above"). That said, I split my 254 down into sub-categories (e.g. non-affiliated left-wing, non-affiliated right-wing, single issue, a couple of others I can't remember) and had 174 that I couldn't otherwise categorise, so your figure of 170 is intriguing. Can you remember where it was from?
A few places. This Guardian article, this tweet, this Wikipedia article, and this report thing.
I see where the difference arises; it's just a question of categorisation as I thought. I've downloaded the Electoral Commission report though and if I get bored I might go through it properly and figure out just where we differ (I've only skimmed it so far).

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Re: The General Election of Thursday 7 May 2015 *

Post by Gavin Chipper » Fri Feb 02, 2018 4:44 pm

Gavin Chipper wrote:
Fri Apr 10, 2015 2:52 pm
Mark James wrote:I hope I'm not steering the conversation away too much by bringing up Anarcho capitalism/libertarianism again but I saw Toby's campaign poster and one of his platforms was raising the minimum wage and I remembered this video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IFbYM2EDz40 that I had seen on youtube. I was wondering what would be the arguments against what the video proposes?
It's very simplistic. If you run a company and you have factory workers (like Simon in the video) and people who type away at a computer (Vicky in the video), you presumably need all of them for your business to function. I'm not sure it even makes sense to say that Vicky makes him £x and Simon makes him £y. You can say how much in total the workforce makes you, but the splitting is arbitrary. The reason Simon gets paid less is not that his work brings less money, but that because Vicky's work presumably requires more skills and so is more in demand.

In any case, the minimum wage is just a small piece of the jigsaw. It's often said that people need a living wage from their employers, but actually everyone needs enough to live on, whether they are in work or not. And that's why it's better to bring in a Citizen's Income. Then, because everyone would have this minimum amount of money, they may be able to demand better pay and conditions from employers because they wouldn't be in such desperate need for a job in the first place. So maybe the minimum wage wouldn't be so necessary with the Citizen's Income. But it's something that should be tested first.

It said in the video that if paying workers became too expensive, employers might be more likely to use robots and do away with the factory workers. Yes, but that might happen anyway. More and more stuff will inevitably get automated. But really that shouldn't be a bad thing. There's no point just doing work for the sake of it. People say that we should all have a job because it gives us dignity, but that's largely bullshit. We need a job to pay the bills. Most of us would be able to find useful things to do with our time without having paid employment, thank you very much. Anyway, the point is that as long as there is enough wealth in the country, then as long as it is distributed properly, then everything's fine. But it's stupid to simply demand that everyone has to work for this, if the work can be done without everyone in full-time employment. What are the chances that everyone having a reasonable standard of living requires everyone of working age to be in full-time employment?
This thread on another forum has an interesting discusssion of minimum wage v basic income. The more I read about it, the more I lean towards a basic income, with the minimum wage being obsoleted.

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Re: The General Election of Thursday 7 May 2015 *

Post by Mark James » Sat Feb 03, 2018 11:01 am

Man that post was a long time ago. I've since become a hard core socialist since then. Anyway yeah, I reckon UBI is inevitable (unless people don't care about people starving to death and looking at the current US administration I don't think they do). I heard a talk recently about self driving vehicles and how they're going to create massive unemployment and in a fairly short time scale, like within the next 15 years or so. I think they said that if you grouped everyone who drives for a living together it's basically the largest employment group in America. We might just have a Marxist revolution yet.

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