Opinion Former Article

Electoral Reform Society: TUC back debate on reform, but Brown needs to turn debate into action

The Electoral Reform Society has welcomed news that the TUC has passed a resolution in favour of debating electoral reform.

However the Society has pressed the government to turn debate into action, and deliver a referendum on a genuinely proportional system.

The Society's Chief Executive Dr Ken Ritchie said:

"The TUC has now added its weight to the demand for a change in the style of our politics. Its demand for a debate on moving to proportional representation adds to the message that coming from poll after poll: people want a better way of conducting elections.

"But we need more than just another debate - as electors we have the right to decide how our political representatives are chosen. We know that the cabinet has already been having discussions on a possible election-day referendum, but now we need to turn debate into action.

"The TUC wants a debate on proportional representation. He should abandon any notion of a referendum on reforms that fall short of PR. Voters have seen the worst of Westminster. They expect real change, real medicine, not the snake oil peddled by some MPs out to save their skins.

"There is still time for Brown to set up a process by which electors - which of course includes the trade unions - can be involved in deciding what change to the voting system should be offered in a referendum.

"Time is short. We need the legislation and we need a public debate. Will Brown take his place in history the man who helped cure a sick democracy, or simply as the Prime Minister who passed by on the other side?

"The answer to that question is in his hands."

PCS Resolution

'Congress recognises that democratic renewal also requires elected politicians to be properly representative of, and accountable to, their constituents and therefore calls on the General Council to instigate a debate within the trade union movement on change in the current parliamentary electoral system towards a system of proportional representation.'

Contact:

For more information contact the Ashley Dé 07968791684 or Dr Ken Ritchie on 07754165551

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