Tag Archives: postal votes

A postal vote for the EU

It came this morning and I’ve sent it straight in.

The arguments about trivial matters such as whether we’ll be 2% better or worse off for a few years are dismaying in their triviality. Even the major medium term issues – such as defeating neoliberal economics, fighting for fair trade rather than free trade – are not the ones to focus on.

The urgent major issues are climate change, biodiversity, population growth. If we can’t deal with these there is no hope for social prosperity or justice – for defeating Beveridge’s five giants: squalor, ignorance, want, idleness, and disease.

The idea that we can tackle these major issues by `taking back control of our country’ is laughable. We need to share our sovereignty with the rest of humanity.

The unique selling point of the EU is that it extends democracy beyond national borders. Of course its democracy is not perfect, but for what is pretty much a first in democratic international cooperation it’s pretty good. It’s better than what we have in the UK in many respects, with our disproportional adversarial system and unelected House of Lords.

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged | 5 Comments

Did late postal votes cost Labour the seat of Derby North?

 

Amidst the slew of bad results for the Labour party on election night was the loss of Derby North by just 41 votes. Crunch the numbers and the incumbent, Chris Williamson, missed out on re-election by a margin of just 0.09 per cent of the vote – that’s just under one vote for every 1,000 cast. A bitter pill for him to swallow, I’m sure, but could it have been different?

I lodged a Freedom of Information Act request with Derby City Council asking how many postal votes they had received after 10pm on polling day. After that time, of course, votes can no longer be accepted and don’t count. We can’t know how many people turned back en route to the polling station once they realised it had gone 10 o’clock and they were too late to play their part, but we can find out how many unwittingly sent their vote back too late.

Posted in News | Also tagged | 19 Comments
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