A Better Democracy

A better democracy in the UK?

The UK is one of the oldest democracies in the world and has used a First Past The Post (FPTP) system for electing its parliamentarians since at least the Middle Ages. The world has however moved on to better and fairer alternatives, and in the present we are just one of two nations in Europe, along with Belarus, who still use FPTP. To move Britain into the 21st century, Volt therefore proposes a more representative model to elect our parliamentarians to the House of Commons as part of proposed changes to make our electoral system more responsive to voters’ interests.

Any new model needs to ensure that those in parliament represent the plurality of opinions held by the electorate, and away from a system that allows a government without winning a majority of the vote. We believe that the Single Transferable Vote (STV) is the best such model at this stage in time.

Why do we need Proportional Representation

Why do we need the Single Transferable Vote?

For over a century British elections have been a contest between the visions of the Conservative and Labour parties. Volt believes this is an outdated model that offers only a binary choice to a country with a wealth of diversity and opinion. The UK has in the past not been averse to changing electoral laws to represent society’s changing views, as has been the case with the removal of hereditary peers from the House of Lords in 1999. To build on such change, we need an overhaul of the electoral system, and specifically FPTP.

There are a multitude of representative electoral systems to choose from. Within the UK, Volt however believes STV to be best fit due to it:

Ensuring a significantly more representative parliament compared to the current system. We cannot continue having elections that allow for a minority of voters to represent the will of the people. A majority in Parliament can only be represented by a majority of voters.

Enhancing some of the benefits of FPTP. FPTP allows all voters access to a local MP to whom they can address their concerns. STV doesn’t just keep access to a local MP, but enhances it by ensuring a higher likelihood of at least one local representative having an ideological position closer to that of the voter.

Removing the idea of a ‘wasted’ vote and the need for tactical voting. Voters in safe seats, regardless of whether those seats are Labour, Conservative or SNP, will benefit from a new electoral system that means their vote matters.

Being a tried and tested system. It is already implemented in other countries with similar democracies to the UK. Elections in Ireland, Australia, and Malta, as well as specific elections within the UK in Northern Ireland and Scotland, are already contested via STV.

The 5+1 Challenges

Volt has defined 5+1 fundamental Challenges that need to be tackled in each European country and in Europe as a whole.

Why 5 + 1 Challenges?

The 5 Challenges are basically the same for every country, but their implementation can be adapted on the national level to take into account local realities.

The +1 Challenge – our proposal to reform and strengthen the EU – is identical across all our national programmes.

View the policy portfolio
  • 01

    Smart State

    Education and digitalisation are key elements of the 21st century

  • 02

    Economic Renaissance

    An innovative economy must be the engine of society's progress

  • 03

    Social Equality

    No-one should be left behind - no matter their gender, income, religion. or origin

  • 04

    Global Balance

    Europe needs to assume responsibility for its role in global challenges

  • 05

    Citizen Empowerment

    People must be empowered to influence politics beyond elections alone

  • +1

    EU Reform

    We love the EU - this doesn't mean there is no room for improvement