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Conservatives rubbish rumoured Labour plans to change the voting system

The BBC is reporting that as part of a set of constitutional reforms, Gordon Brown is to announce tomorrow plans to change the voting system and adopt the alternative vote system of proportional representation for elections to the House of Commons.

According to the BBC:

"In his statement, Mr Brown will say there would have to be a referendum before any change could be made to the voting system."

So let me get this straight, he wants to offer a referendum on something for which there is no clamour, yet refuses to give us the referendum on the Lisbon Treaty - which was part of the manifesto on which he was elected?!

In any case, quite how he could get this through in his remaining (at most) eleven months as Prime Minister, I don't know, not least because there is a sizeable number of Labour MPs hostile to such an idea. It's a distraction from bigger issues with which he should be dealing - not to mention a shameless attempt to curry favour with the Liberal Democrats.

Conservative HQ has just released a statement (the full text of which I am trying to obtain) as below suggesting that changing the electoral rules because the Prime Minister knows he couldn't win under the current system is a demonstration of how he is hiding from the electorate, who he knows want to give him and his Government their marching orders.


The text of the initial Conservative reaction is as follows:

"With his call to change the electoral system it is clear the Prime Minister is trying to change the rules because he thinks he will lose. If Gordon Brown is as concerned about democratic renewal as he says he is there is an easy way to fix that, call a General Election now."

Jonathan Isaby


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