Electoral reform is needed but so are coalition laws - Yorkshire Post Letters

From: Gareth Robson, Beckenham.

I APPLAUD the recently-published column and letter from Klina Jordan and John Riseley on electoral reform.

Yes, we need to replace “first past the post” which can in theory deliver all 650 seats to a party whose candidates all come first in their local constituency.

But, yes, we must avoid voting systems which leave the parties with too much power over selection and which make it too difficult for genuine independents to get elected. Not easy.

A ballot box held during an election count.

But – whilst keen on reform – can I add a further concern? Electoral reform means near-inevitable coalitions.

Coalitions should mean co-operation and compromise (good!) but without well-designed laws on how governments are to be formed we will end up with repeats of the 2010 or 2017 travesty whereby either the Lib Dems, DUP or SNP enable either Labour or Tories to rule in return for (largely secret) policy concessions.

Instead, proper compromise would be achieved if the law demanded that coalitions be formed by parties in order of how many seats they won.

This would stop Lib Dem tails wagging big-party dogs and it would force Labour and Tories to grow up and lead through compromise.