How "Enhanced PR" resolves the key issues with PR
EPR1 - Maintaining the Constituency Link
The main criticism of existing PR methods is that they lose the direct link between constituencies and MPs.
Enhanced PR maintains this direct link, exactly as under the existing FPTP method.
How is this achieved?
Constituency elections proceed as normal - constituents place 1 vote for 1 candidate, and the candidate with the most votes wins and becomes the MP for that constituency with a seat in the Commons.
However, MPs will no longer have an equal vote in the Commons - their voting power will be directly proportional to their party's share of the vote (for parties that have won a seat, minus independents).
Applying this to the General Election 2010 results gives:
In this way, the direct link between constituencies and MPs is maintained, while providing proportional representation in the Commons, with all the benefits that PR provides.
It also sets a threshold for entry into government - a party must be capable of winning a constituency outright.
EPR2 - Guaranteeing a proportional majority Government
The other key criticism of PR is that it leads to weak, unstable coalition governments.
If required, EPR1 can be adjusted to ensure that a majority government is formed after an election, while still maintaining broad proportionality.
Instead of allocating a party's voting power directly in accordance with their share of the elected vote, the party with the most votes is given a majority voting power which reflects their lead.
Using the General Election 2010 results, the Conservatives had a 7.62% elected vote share lead over Labour. Allocating voting power based on "50% + half of lead" gives a result of:-
Equivalent to a Conservative majority of 48.
This shows how EPR2 can guarantee a proportional, stable majority government.
For further information on EPR, please contact Mark Slade via email@example.com, or Slayed06 on Twitter.
Applying EPR to existing election results is somewhat misleading - previous elections were not held under EPR, and so did not offer the electorate the key advantages of PR which would undoubtedly change the voting pattern:-
- Every single vote counts.
- Results are proportional to the votes cast.
- Eliminates the need for tactical party voting.
- Eliminates the need for Gerrymandering (i.e. biased changes to constituency boundaries).
For a comparison with the General Election 2010 results: