danieldwilliam: (electoral reform)
[personal profile] danieldwilliam
Where does  Brexit leave voting reform?

Very difficult to tell. It will depend on the how the cascade of crises we're about to have tumble. That is probably true for many things.

My view is obviously coloured by the fact that I think our poor voting system is one of the contributory factors in the Brexit vote. If you think that I'm an out of touch Guardian reading, metropolitian liberal elite wanker who is part of the problem then my diagnosis is unlikely to be persuasive.

There are I think a number of binary positions to consider that build up to some scenarios.

Brexit either will or will not happen before 2020.

The government either will or will not collapse.

The Labour Party will recognise that it has lost the firm support of many traditional voters or it will not.

Scotland either will or won't become independent.

The Party system either will or won't break down.

As a reaction to the shock to the Party System can progressives or conservaties gather round a vote winning leader or a vote winning platform or not? Are social liberals and economic liberals allied or opposed? Do they converge or diverge?

Amongst that there are some scenarios that favour voting reform or constitutional reform more widely.

For example, the government collapses before Christmas, without Brexit, the Labour Party runs on a manifesto of putting power back in the hands of people with a constitutional convention, electoral reform and regional devolution.

Or the less favourably, the Tories don't implode and quietly don't invoke Article 50, we get to 2020 and the North of England votes for UKIP, Scotland votes for independence, and the Tories continue to run the country just has they have been for the decade before.

I think we need electoral reform but it is difficult to persuade people that it the solution to the problems that they have in their lives because they don't see the connection between voting mechanics and how power is operated and how power is used to apply resources to solve problems.

Date: 2016-06-29 03:45 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] f4f3.livejournal.com
"Or the less favourably, the Tories don't implode and quietly don't invoke Article 50, we get to 2020 and the North of England votes for UKIP, Scotland votes for independence, and the Tories continue to run the country just has they have been for the decade before."

I'd love to be wrong, but I think this is the most likely scenario. Intensified by Labour melting down in England the way it did in Scotland, and almost certainly becoming a rump in our increasingly right-wing country.

Date: 2016-06-29 07:28 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] zenicurean.livejournal.com
Do you think the Tories (or indeed anyone) could avoid triggering Article 50 to begin with? The EU has done the whole "vote again until you get it right" rigamarole before, with Ireland, and it was deeply unpleasant for everyone concerned. I would've liked the UK to remain, but now that the vote's done, it seems to me that the democratic verdict is final. Surely all of England and Wales, with the exception of London, would raise hell if Parliament tried to weasel out of it?

Date: 2016-06-30 09:52 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] f4f3.livejournal.com
Oh, I think there would be riots, but I think there will be riots ANYWAY.

What I'm hearing floated at the moment is that Section (or is it Article, or Schedule?) 50 is not the only mechanism for leaving, and that the UK will negotiate its own terms for Brexit. These terms, remarkably, would include such minor items as an agreement to freedom of movement (probably re-titled "Freedom of Labour") and the UK to get access to the single market on payment of a fee which might be remarkably similar to £100 million pounds a week or so.

Date: 2016-06-30 11:12 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] danieldwilliam.livejournal.com
I think they could get away with it. I share F3F4's view that there will probably be riots somewhere sometime - pick your city and your time.

If they were determined to avoid Brexit (which is what the Tory leadership election is really about) then there might be a way.

They could delay triggering Article 50 during the contest. Then they need time to consult on important matters of national unity. Then they need a Royal Commission to examine the constitutional implications of the Scotland Act. They then need a Royal Commission to examine the position of Northern Ireland. Hey ho - a couple of years have gone past and the pound is still depressed by the uncertainty, Scotland looks like it might vote to leave, the economy looks a bit ropey. No one but Farage is really champing at the bit for Brexit. Oh, looks it 2019 and it's time for us to start thinking the general election. Sorry, didn't quite get round to it.

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