danieldwilliam: (machievelli)
I am standing for election to the Council of the Electoral Reform Society. My election statement is below. Two other Unlock Democracy Council members are also standing, James Grindrod and Stephan Carter. We hope that having some cross over of membership of the two Councils will help the two organisations work well together.

You can still join the ERS and vote in the election. In order to vote you'll need to be register by the 24th July.


The last Council election had about 650 voters so your vote could well be influential. Also you can experience voting using STV.

Danny Zinkus Statement ERS Council Election Statement

Read more... )
danieldwilliam: (electoral reform)
Really very pleased to see the Scottish Parliament Committee on Standards, Procedures and Public Appointments recommend a light touch but useful Lobbying Register.

This follows the work of Neil Findlay MSP in raising a private members’ bill to introduce such a lobbying register and the support of Unlock Democracy and especially the Electoral Reform Society Scotland in supporting and promoting his bill and raising public support for it. I had some small role in this but the real work was done by the staff at those two campaign organisations and of course, Neil Findlay and his staff who deserve huge credit for pushing an unpopular issue. Also well done to the Scottish Parliament clerking team who took an innovative approach to the public consultation.

This report is worth the subscription fees to the ERS and UD alone.
danieldwilliam: (Default)

So, that’s the analysis of the Unlock Democracy Council elections by Constituency.




London and South East

 Some broader picture points.

Turnout was quite low.

The West had the best turnout at 22.8%, London and the South East 16.9%. Overall turnout was 20.7%.

Whilst the allocation of seats by elector could not be bettered, the allocation of seats by actual voter favours London and disfavours the North with 68.57 votes cast for each seat elected in London and 110 votes cast per seat in the North. This is obviously a feature of the differential turnout.

Spoilt Ballots were 1% of the total cast which compares unfavourably with UK Westminster spoilt ballots of between 0.11% and 0.35% between 1945 and 2001.

Out of 19 members of council, 9 have not served on the council before.

Unlock Democracy operates protected seats for gender (1/3rd at least of men and women) and ethnicity (at least 2 self-identified ethnic minorities).  All of the gender protected seats fell naturally and one of the ethnic protected seats fell naturally leaving 1 councillor elected as a result of protected seats.

Once again, thanks to Lalland Peat Worrier for his method of presentation

danieldwilliam: (Default)

Finally, to the North, and home.

Of the 1,413 electors 330 voted giving a turnout of 23.4%. The quota was 82.

These brave Northern electors were charged with selecting 3 members of the council from 7 candidates on offer. They set off to do so with alactrity.

Elected with 97 1st Preferences is former vice-chair Stuart Hill.  

Hill’s surplus votes and the transfers from Dane Roberts and Stephen Hesford put Peter Hirst on 86.68 and elected second. Zinkus-Sutton sits on 61.48, significantly, but not untouchably ahead of Wil Savage and Andrew Ducker. Hirst’s handful of surplus votes break kindly for Zinkus-Sutton and he moves to 64.12, some 16.56 votes ahead of Savage.

Even a slightly uneven split of transfers from Andrew Ducker in favour of Wil Savage wasn’t enough to for Savage to catch Zinkus-Sutton and Zinkus-Sutton finishes in 3rd place on 77.12, 12.56 votes clear of Savage to take the final North seat.

Again, this is a seat where the top placed candidates on 1st preferences went on to win election and despite a valiant effort from Andrew Ducker no on managed to change their ranking during the transfer process.

North Constituency Chart

danieldwilliam: (Default)

To London and the South East and the worst turn out in a pretty dire set of turnouts for a pro-democracy campaign group. Of 2,845 electors, only 480 or 16.9% cast a ballot.

18 candidates stood for 7 places. Quota of 59.25

Chris Carrigan, who also sits on the Council of the Electoral Reform Society was elected first. He tops the first preference polling with 53 a few votes short of the quota but it’s not until round 6 with the exclusion of Kevin McNamara that Carrigan picks up the necessary votes (60) to be elected.

In a curious twist of the Single Transferrable Vote count Carrigan’s surpluses are not distributed immediately and Tom Miller is excluded. Miller’s preferences break heavily towards Finola Kelly and she is elected with 64 votes.

This is the only constituency where the final ordering of candidates didn’t follow their first preference rank.

Carrigan overtaken by Kelly.  Susan Murray moves from 6th place in round 1 to 5th place.  Andrew Blick falls from 5th on first preferences to 7th.

However, of the 7 top ranked candidates on first preferences none failed to secure election.

Outside of the top seven there were tussles between Tom Miller and Debbie Chay and between Henderson, Colwell and Walsh with priority changing hands between candidates as transfers swung from round to round. Looking at the kinked shape of the graphs I am reminded of the economics lectures on oligopoly. A somewhat unhappy occurance whilst contemplating Unlock Democracy election results.

Elected for London and the South East

Chris Carrigan
Finola Kelly
Stephen Carter
Rosemary Bechler
Susan Murray
John Stafford
Andrew  Blick

In John Stafford I think we see a rare and very welcome Conservative in the ranks of Unlock Democracy officials.

London and SE Constituency

danieldwilliam: (Default)

We next skip merrily to the East Constituency, of Yorkshire and the Humber, the East Midlands and East of England and we bring out the big guns.

Out of 1,746 22.7% cast their vote giving 392 votes, electing 4 members with a quota of 78.4.

Elected on the first round with a whopping 102 first preferences is current chair Vicky Seddon. Second preferences from Seddon help Charter 88 founder and former New Statesman Editor, Stuart Weir, into the second seat.

Third placed Diana Wallis sits on 65.14 votes after preferences are distributed from Weir.  Behind the former MEP in fourth place is Liz Carlton on 45.18, and in fifth place is Nan Sloane on 34.47. With no one else polling more than 15 votes and 6 other candidates this looks like it’s going to be a relatively comfortable result for Diana Wallis and a long slog for Calton to pick up the last seat ahead of Sloan.

And so it proves and I think you can really see the nature of the race for 3rd and 4th places on the chart.

With a few candidates with relatively few votes none of the next few transfer rounds prove decisive. Transfers break more or less equally between the remaining candidates and both Wallis and Carlton nudge closer to election.

Both Wallis and Carlton hold on to the gap they had after the 3rd round. Wallis reaches the quota and Carlton finishes on 72.5 votes to Sloan’s 60.78. Had Holvey’s preferences bucked the general trend of being evenly distributed Sloan could have caught Carlton.

A final note of interest is that Owais Rajput was elected to council as the only protected candidate.

East Constituency Chart

danieldwilliam: (Default)

Starting my brief electoral analysis with the West Constituency, of Wales, South West and the West Midlands.


This election looks to have been over pretty much as soon as the first preferences were counted.


Out of 1,615 voters 22.8 % cast a total of 366 votes, electing 4 members and a quota of 73.2 first preferences saw 3 of the 4 councillors elected.  Mary Southcott top billed with 99 first preferences followed by Eithne George on 83. Round 3 of the count saw the exclusion of Christine Herbert-Mosavie, who in an election with a  ban on active campaigning failed to submit a personal statement and gathered only 3 first preferences.  The final candidate elected on first preferences was Phil Starr, former Chair of Charter 88.


This left Alan Debenham and Philip Davis contesting the last seat.  Debenham had out polled Davis on first preferences by 39 to 23.  Out of a total of 43 redistributed votes he picked up 12.57 to move to 51.57 with Davis picking up 8.08 to move to 31.08.  With only a further 43 votes up for grads Davis would need to nearly ¾ of them to catch Debenham and this proved too much for him. Davis narrowed the gap but couldn’t overturn it. Davis finished on 49.91 votes. Debenham elected with 64.68.

West Constituency Chart

danieldwilliam: (Default)
I have been elected to the Council of Unlock Democracy. I'll be serving the North Constituency as the third member and most northerly member.

This follows my unsuccessful attempt to be elected to the Electoral Reform Society council last year.

It's quite a responsibilty.

The second item is that I'll be providing some brief electoral analysis.  I'll be using a format developed by the most excellent Lallands Peat Worrier to chart the election results.

The charts show the accumlated votes for each candidate as the count moves through each round. I think they give a better indication of how close the election result was at a glance in a way that a quick look at first preferences doesn't.

I'll be starting with the West Constituency.


danieldwilliam: (Default)

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