Time for statesmanship

Many supporters of the United Kingdom remaining united were concerned about the prospect of a minority Labour Government dependent for survival on SNP votes.

However, an (English) Conservative Government, with a wafer-thin majority facing a large SNP as the third largest party in the House and the second largest Opposition party could be even worse for the unity of the UK. Clearly, there are major differences between the two parties not only on Scottish independence but also on, for example, the economy.

The danger is that this will come across as differences between England and Scotland and hasten the end of the UK as we know it.

The underlying problem is the unrepresentative First Past The Post (Winner takes All) voting system, which has given the SNP nearly every seat in Scotland for about half the votes.

For more on the dangers to the UK, we recommend David Green’s excellent paper at http://www.knackered.org.uk.

It is time now for David Cameron and the Conservative Party to be statesmanlike to save the UK.

By introducing the Single Transferable Vote (STV) for all future elections, the Government could ensure that the SNP was properly represented but not over-represented and that the other parties in Scotland, and indeed throughout the UK, were properly represented.

Moreover, a new Reform Act to introduce STV would ensure proper representation for all voters throughout the UK, including UKIP and Green voters everywhere, Conservative supporters in the north of England and Labour supporters in the south.

The Liberal Democrats would support such legislation, which has always been their policy. The SNP, although it would probably lose seats under STV, could be expected to support the legislation because STV is also SNP policy. It is very likely that other small parties would support it. The only question would be whether the Labour Party would support a new Reform Act to improve British democracy and preserve the UK.

Come on David; be a statesman! Show at the moment of victory that you have the magnanimity to reach out and rule for and on behalf of the whole nation. Be the PM who saved the UK, not the one who destroyed it.

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