Essay on British Government's Decisions Are Under Constant Scrutiny

Essay on British Government's Decisions Are Under Constant Scrutiny

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Elections have become an important part of today’s society and the Governments decisions are constantly under scrutiny. This accentuates the role of the Parties and the intricate process they go through in order to claim their seat in the House of Commons. The main British Electoral system to date is properly titled the ‘Simple Majorities in Single-Membered Constituencies’, however the more commonly known name for this is ‘First Past The Post’.
First Past the Post (FPTP) is known as a plurality vote system in single member constituencies. This means that in each constituency it is the candidate who wins the largest number of votes who wins. The candidate doesn’t need an overall majority of 50% plus and it is quite possible to win a seat with only a third of the votes. Undeniably most MPs do not enjoy an overall majority, as this is very rare and has only happened on a few occasions. In the free and fair Elections voters only have one vote. They cannot choose between candidates from one party and their seconds or third choices are not included. At the end of the voting process the votes are totalled and the candidate with the largest number of votes wins. The winner only needs one more vote than their nearest rival to secure victory; hence the name, ‘first past the post’.
FPTP is used in Britain for General Elections because it usually produces a single party government, which is essentially in the Country’s best interest because a single party government produces a stable, strong and certain government. Having a single party government provides the country with a clear manifesto and this means we then all know what the government’s policies are and we can judge them accordingly, consequently allowing us to scrutinize them effe...


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... The results are hugely disproportional and this can cause disfranchisement within the public. Nevertheless even with these disadvantages, using FPTP will inevitably give you a single party government, or a very strong coalition (as seen since the 2010 General Election) Subsequently a strong government will have a resilient manifesto, meaning it is easier to scrutinize them in the long run and see exactly what they’re doing. Also FPTP will facilitate the government to pass almost any legislature, ensuring that we don’t reach ‘grid lock’ as America has done. However First Past the Post does indeed have flaws in it, but the advantages do outweigh the disadvantages because there is presently no other voting system that we as a country prefer. AV was suggested, but rejected through a referendum. First Past the post gives us results and is efficient; at least for now.


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