â€œBoundary changes will make it much more difficult for Labour to win an overall majority in the next general election, it was reported today. But the Conservatives will still need a swing of 9%-10% to win power outright, making a hung parliament more likely than it has been for many years.
Of 13 new seats created by the Boundary Commission, 10 would have been won by the Conservatives in 2005, compared with two for the Liberal Democrats and just one for Labour, according to research quoted in The Times.”
A hung parliament, as we all know, means a coalition government and only one party is poised to be kingmaker in this situation; the Liberal Democrats. They must be rubbing their hands with glee at prospect of finally being back in power, if only as a deputy to one of the bigger parties!
Why is this critical? Well, the LibDems have a long time aim of introducing Proportional Representation. Any party that wants the LibDems as a junior partner will probably have to swallow that bitter pill. PR of course means coalition government will become the mainstay in UK politics but also diminish the power of the party system.
No party will be able to have a huge majority; none will be able to rush through dodgy legislation or marginalise its own dissident MPs by sheer weight of numbers. In theory this is a real boon for democracy (something we could do with more of in this country but that’s a whole other piece in itself).
What does this mean for us, the ordinary voter? Well, hopefully more power! More influence in the way weâ€™re governed, more accurate representation of our views in Parliament and perhaps more avenues for civic engagement.
There is a lot more to it than that of course (the LibDems might be gutless enough to drop PR as a pathway to power) but we can but hope that new boundaries will mean a more accurate democratic make up in the next Parliament.
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Filed in: Party politics