The Election

Today in the UK is election day. If you have been here for more than a few hours, you will already be bored with the non-stop coverage. But not as bored as we are.

It will soon be over, and the results will come in over the next few days.

Here are a few interesting facts (generalisations):

England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland are divided into 650 constituencies, roughly equal sized (by population, not geographical area) represented by one elected Member of Parliament (MP) in the House of Commons.

Elections are held on Thursdays. Anyone over 18 who is registered can vote if they wish, though it is not compulsory. Voting is at a polling station. Mine is maybe 50m from my home, but some can be far away or people may have issues and so postal votes are available. There is no on-line or electronic voting.

The election is called by the Prime Minister (PM) but there has to be at least one every five (5) years.

The main parties are Conservative (who have ruled our country since 2010), Labour and some minor parties, like the Liberal Democrats or Greens. In Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland there are local parties who also stand. There are often small, independent candidates.

Voting in person means going to a station, identifying yourself, marking a cross (X) on a piece of paper for your choice and posting it in a box.

You can vote for whoever you want. No-one asks you why you voted for a person. You could like with their politics or think they have great legs or agree with their racist policies or know their children or just think that all the other candidates are worse. If you don’t like any, you can not bother to vote or spoil your paper. You can vote for people who are dead if their name appears on the paper (presumably they died in the time between the names being submitted and the vote).

The vote is not secret. Every voter has a unique number and every paper does too, and they are recorded, so you could see who voted for what if you cared.

The votes are counted by hand and the candidate with the most wins. That constituency is represented by the winning person and their party gets a seat in Parliament. The party with the greatest number of seats is the government, the rest are opposition. That party chooses or has a leader who becomes Prime Minister, so we do not vote for the PM directly (unless you are in their constituency, of course)

If the winners do not get more than 325 (half) they can:

We don’t generally like to talk politics. We look back over the last rule of the Tories and see Brexit (which most people agree now was bad), COVID-19, Boris’ partygate, illegal immigration at an all time high, increasing crime and violence and prisoners being released from prison at random, Truss destroying the economy, the health service in tatters, huge national debt and record high government borrowing… it goes on.

Who will win? Ask me tomorrow…

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One Response to The Election

  1. pws says:

    I went to my polling station today and it was quiet but steady.

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