The Voting Dilemma

Morning all, I hope you’re having a fantastic day?

A coincidence of thoughts and events has prompted this morning’s ramblings.

A work colleague-friend wrote on Facebook last night about her disillusionment with the political parties available, and this morning I was checking the news and saw that in the Rochester and Strood by-election on Thursday the former Conservative MP Mr Mark Reckless has been returned to his seat in Parliament, this time as a UKIP MP.

Oh dear.

It is unfortunate enough that the ultra right wing bigots have managed to gain a second seat in Parliament but what is really worrying is that, according to this press report from The Independent, only just over 50% of registered voters turned out.

Oh dear oh dear.

On the back of this ‘victory’, Nigel Farage and his ignorant cronies are planning to control parliament after the next election by determining who will get into the coalition.

Ah, the delusions of grandeur because they have two seats in Parliament. How sweet, like children planning an evil empire.

The voter turn out results are interesting. Only 54% of voters turned out for the by-election on Thursday, which suggests either voter apathy or disillusionment with the entire political establishment. What were the other 46% of registered voters doing? Would their votes have tipped the election to another party or merely confirmed the UKIP victory?

In other UK political news, a recent YouGov poll found that, if people believed they had a chance of winning in their constituency, 26% of voters would be likely to vote for the Green Party. Only 24% said the same about UKIP, which would make the Greens the third largest party in Parliament.

It will come as no surprise to people that, because of their stance on social and environmental justice I am a Green voter. I don’t necessarily agree with all their policies but I am in agreement with more of their policies than with any other political party.

The Green’s need to up their game in the next six months to convince the voting public that they could win, if people get the idea that they are the party of ‘a wasted vote’ or ‘the protest vote’ (I’ve heard both) out of their heads.

I don’t actually agree with the concept of political parties because an MP should be elected to represent their electors during the legislative process, yet in a party system an MP must vote as their party dictates except on the limited occasions when their party gives them a free vote.

That is not democratic.

Thus my problem; I believe a fully democratic society is the fairest and most free, yet we are constrained by a system that is basically undemocratic and unrepresentative. Do I vote for a party that shares some of my beliefs yet by partaking of the current political structure is supporting this undemocratic system, or do I not vote?

Every bone in my body screams that I MUST vote. I have always encouraged other people to vote, using the argument that if they don’t like the way things are they need to vote to change them, and if they don’t vote they can’t complain. It would be terribly hypocritical for me to say I’m not voting in May 2015.

How do I reconcile my objections to the current political system with my core belief in voting?

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