Now that the Bill paving the for the holding of a referendum on whether the country should change the system we use to elect Members of Parliament has completed its passage through Parliament I thought it would be useful if I posted a few articles about AV.

Firstly AV stands for Alternative Vote and it is the name given to the system that will be used to elect MP’s in future if the Country votes yes in the referendum which is to be held on the first Thursday in May the same day as the local elections in England. In Wales and Scotland it will be held on the same day as the Welsh Assembly elections and the Scottish Parliament elections.

Secondly, the referendum is not simply seeking the opinion of the Country if the Country votes yes then the new system which is already provided for in the Act will automatically come into force for all future general elections.

Thirdly, this is the case regardless of how many people turn out to vote in the referendum. During the Bill’s passage through Parliament many of us felt that in order for the referendum to be binding there ought to be a requirement for a minimum number of people to vote but this was rejected by the Government.

I should say at the outset of this series of posts on AV that I support the retention of our existing system of electing MP’s which is often referred to as First Past the Post system. I prefer the more accurate term of Most Votes Wins. I consistently voted against the Bill in Parliament and I will be voting No in the Referendum. In future postings I will explain how the new system works and why I will be voting No.