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To not agree with tactical voting?

23 replies

superstarheartbreaker · 11/04/2013 22:54

Due to the intense interest in Thatcher etc. I mean what's the point of democracy if you don't vote for what you believe in. (excuse my ignorance of the English political system and please educate me if you can) But personally I have never been able to do it.

OP posts:

Scholes34 · 11/04/2013 23:23

Most people don't vote anyway. The turnout for local elections is extremely low.


DioneTheDiabolist · 11/04/2013 23:25

YABU. For some people, tactical voting is the only way to keep a really odious candidate out of office and at least those voters care enough to cast their ballot.


ComposHat · 12/04/2013 00:01

YABU - If we can't have a political system that reflects the votes cast, then people are forced into tactical voting. I generally vote Labour, but say I moved to Devon where Labour trail behind the other two parties, my vote would be wasted.

So my best bet in that situation to ensure a Labour victory in the General Election would be to vote for the candidate most likely to beat the Tories (usually the Lib Dems in Devon) so the Tories can't get a majority of MPs in the Commons.


custardismyhamster · 12/04/2013 00:26

Labour voter here, work for a union.

But agree with previous poster. And sometimes, in an area where labour will never get in, say BNP or UKIP are close second-you vote whoever is usually first to stop racist scumbags getting in


Startail · 12/04/2013 00:41

I would vote anything to stop the BNP getting in.

I have voted liberal to avoid Labour getting in and Liberal again because he was a really good constituency MP.

(I'm a very liberal conservative by choice, but British constituency based first past the post doesn't always offer choice).

By choice I'd throw Gove in the Thames and ask the rest of the present Government to engage brain before announcing half baked policies. At present they are making just as shit a job of getting us out of the financial mess as Labour did getting us in it.

Thus I'm not sure who to vote for Sad


HarrietSchulenberg · 12/04/2013 00:50

Ha! That's the one quote I can remember from my Politics A Level. "Tactical voting is fruit machine politics", Neil Kinnock 1987.


Toadinthehole · 12/04/2013 02:04

Politics is all about modifying ideals to be pragmatic. Most people vote tactically insofar as they choose the best candidate who is likely to win. Use an AV voting system, if this a problem....

Oops. Nearly forgot- the UK didn't want AV.


BlueberryHill · 12/04/2013 08:27

We are a democracy, part of that is being able to vote for whoever I want and for whatever reason. Tactical voting, as other posters have said, can be really useful to keep out a candidate that you really do not want especially in some areas that are dyed in the wool blue / red depending on your views, so in sense, I am voting for my beliefs.

Not sure how it will work with Tory / Liberal races in the next election, as hey, they were both in the government.


Toadinthehole · 12/04/2013 22:17

I agree. Nothing wrong with tactical voting, which is why the best systems (ie, not the one we have) accomodate it.

I expect that in Tory / Liberal marginals, some voters will switch to Labour from both parties, others who prefer Labour will carry on voting Liberal because they aren't the Tories - just probably less.

In Lib / Lab and Tory / Lab marginals, the Liberal vote will collapse.

The more interesting question is how well the UKIP vote will hold up. It probably won't. Most UKIP supporters will vote Tory because they won't think UKIP will have any chance of being elected - ie, just the same problem as the Liberals used to face.

It's a pity for UKIP and perhaps the Greens that AV wasn't adopted. It would have unlocked a lot of votes for them. People think the Liberals would have been the beneficiaries, but not really. They would have picked up some support at Tory / Labour expense and lost as much out the back door to the Greens. By contrast, the Tories would have been absolutely crucified across the south of England, which is why they were so solidly against switching to AV.


DioneTheDiabolist · 13/04/2013 00:29

Perhaps we should have a box that says This is a tactical vote, so that the candidates know. If people are using tactical votes to keep a fuckwit candidate out, they should know, and think about/amend their policies.


TidyDancer · 13/04/2013 00:51

I've had to do it. I live in a Tory stronghold and voting Lib Dem at the last election was the only possible way to attempt to change things. Sadly for me it didn't work (and I don't know how I could bring myself to vote for them again). I wish I didn't have to vote tactically, but sometimes you have to see things from a national perspective rather than a local one.


cumfy · 13/04/2013 01:17

If we had proportional representation then, yes, everyone could vote for what they believe in.

But we don't

The vast majority of votes don't count, as they are in safe seats.


YouTheCat · 13/04/2013 01:23

We need a 'none of the above' box in some places.

Glenda Jackson for PM!


OkayHazel · 13/04/2013 02:44

The point of democracy is that you can do exactly what you want with your vote. Tactical, spoil, vote traditionally or not vote at all.



eatyouwithaspoon · 13/04/2013 08:39

I am the same as Tidydancer it backfired on me though as effectively I voted Tory. Never again though, I will vote for what I believe in (Labour). I have a bad feeling that thre backlash against the Libs will get UKIP in where I live now though.


rumbelina · 13/04/2013 09:07

I agree that TV is necessary at times but was pleasantly surprised when, in local election, I just couldn't bring myself to vote tactically so stuck to my guns and the candidate got in despite odds/history being against them.


rumbelina · 13/04/2013 09:08

'pleasantly surprised'?? God I sound like a twat.


WestieMamma · 13/04/2013 09:10

I think it's really sad that the referendum on proportional representation happened so soon after the general election. It became a referendum on Nick Clegg's popularity rather than on electoral reform. Such a shame.


MiaowTheCat · 13/04/2013 09:40

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

redskyatnight · 13/04/2013 10:15

DH and I often have this discussion. We live in a Lab/Tory marginal so anything other than those 2 parties is effectively making up the numbers. So I restrict my voting option to which I want out of these two parties. DH argues that if everyone did what I did, then we'd never end up in a position where any other party had a chance and votes for who he wants to out of all the parties.
I really want a voting system that's not "first past the post".


Merguez · 13/04/2013 10:24

YABU. tactical voting is a direct result of our 'first-past-the-post' political system.

If we had Proportional Representation it wouldn't be necessary.

And in a democracy people have the right to vote tactically if they want. Just as they also have the right not to vote at all.

I support a minority party which sometimes isn't even represented in an election in my area, so I will often vote tactically.


Merguez · 13/04/2013 10:26

it is also interesting that in local elections, which are less dominated by the main parties, the minority parties tend to get a higher proportion of the votes than in national elections, where voting for a minor party is often regarded as 'a wasted vote'. So i guess there is more tactical voting in national elections than local ones.


MajorDivvy · 13/04/2013 10:28

Well whatever party I vote for won't be voting for the party I want as there are no monster raving loony candidates in my area.

People think I'm joking when I say I'd vote for them but I'm really not - ATEOTD all the other parties let us down dramatically by not keeping their promises and at least MRL party admit that they probably couldn't make most of their policies work. Let's face it, they couldn't do a much worse job than a lot of politicians!

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