Friday, May 7

Conservative have 60+ seat majority in England

Bearing in mind that devolution has given Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland varying but increasing degrees of control over their individual region's politics, looking at this map should make it pretty clear that for English constituents to have anything other than a Conservative-led government would be hard to swallow.

Perhaps rather than proportionate representation, which will give our money and a whole lot of publicity and airtime to over 60 idiots from the BNP, UKIP et al if PR were applied to today's vote distribution (and it is generally accepted that PR would, in fact, considerable enhance the standing of minority causes so 60 seats is very much a minimum figure), we should be seriously considering some form of devolved English government too.

I may not agree with government decisions in Scotland but I respect the fact that many are now made by MPs elected by the Scots. What really annoys me at times is when a host of Labour MPs are also elected in Scotland to serve in the UK parliament and have for several years effectively maintained a very unrepresentative control over English voters who, even in the Blair heydays, had voted Conservative in larger numbers than Labour.

So, yes, there does need to be some change in the 'system' but none of the immediate options of PR or yet more layers of government through devolution on any of the styles used to date will be satisfactory either. Much as I would personally have liked to have seen a clear Conservative UK majority I do appreciate that that too would have been unacceptable in Scotland or, possibly, Wales where they may have been ill-supported. Whilst no-one seems to be particularly happy with the outcome of this election so far it may be an excellent opportunity to make some changes that recognise the simple fact that, for better or worse, the people of different nations do seem to have quite different views on how they'd like their nations run. So be it.

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