1) Assess the Criticisms of the Various Electoral Systems Used Within the Uk (25 Marks)

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There are many electoral systems used within the UK, these are; First Past the Post system (FPTP) which is used for the General Elections, Single Transferable Vote (STV) which is used for the Northern Ireland assembly elections, Supplementary Vote (SV) which is used to elect the London Mayor, Additional Members system (AMS) which is used in the Scottish Parliament elections as well as the Welsh and the London Assembly elections and finally the Close list system which is used to elect Members of the European Parliament (EMP’s). All of these electoral systems do however have many criticisms, which I am going to assess throughout this essay. The FPTP electoral system that is used in the UK general elections has many criticisms. The first criticism is that the FPTP system creates many wasted votes and many of the votes cast may not have any affect on the outcome. For example in the 2010 general election the Conservative party won with 307 seats, however only 36.1 per cent of people on the electoral register voted for them, which means that there were 67.9 per cent of the votes cast in the general election had no effect on the outcome and were wasted. This highlights the criticism of the legitimacy and the authority the current government has as well as the question of the legitimacy of their mandate as effectively 67.9 per cent of people voted against them. Another criticism of the FPTP system is that it favors only the larger parties and in the UK only three parties (Conservative, Labour and arguably the Liberal Democrats). This is seen as a bad thing as many parties don’t even stand any kind of chance during these elections, mostly because unlike the main 3 parties they do not have the money to send Representatives of their party to many different constituencies. This is seen as unfair as the main three parties have such an advantage but also reduces the
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