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Shadow Cabinet Members, 130 MPs and 700 Councillors Are Voting Labour and Voting No

April 19, 2011

Following John Reid’s stellar performance yesterday, when he appeared alongside David Cameron at a NO to AV press conference yesterday, today the Labour NO to AV campaign have announced a number of new Labour figures who will be voting ‘no’ on 5 May.

Three more Shadow Cabinet Members, 130 Labour MPs and over 700 Labour Councillors, join BAFTA awarding winning Ross Kemp in voting Labour and Voting No. Kemp stated:

The Alternative Vote is unfair and unpredictable. It gives the supporters of fringe and extremist parties the opportunity to have their votes counted several times. I believe that equality is important, which is why I support One Person, One Vote. On 5 May I will be voting No, I hope you do too.”

Furthermore Shadow Northern Ireland Secretary, Shaun Woodward and Shadow Defence Secretary Jim Murphy declared their support for the campaign. Writing for Labour Uncut this morning the Labour MP for East Renfrewshire said:

“The main reason I have decided to vote ‘No’ is that the supporters of changing the system haven’t made a convincing enough case that this is the right kind of change. They have struggled to make a persuasive argument about why the country’s politics would be better with AV.

“Some of the arguments made by the pro-AV campaign are, I think, counter-productive. To use the entirely justified public anger about MPs’ abuse of expenses as a driver for an AV voting system risks further alienating the public from the political process because everyone knows AV wouldn’t deal with that problem. The idea that AV would have prevented previous misuse of expenses is wishful thinking.”

Also Voting Labour and Voting NO on 5 May will be former Chief Whip, Nick Brown, and former Defence Secretary Bob Ainsworth; as well as Shadow Junior Foreign Office Minister, Emma Reynolds, Lisa Nandy, MP for Wigan, Shadow Junior Business Minister Chi Onwura, MP for Newcastle Upon Tyne Central and Iain Wright, MP for Hartlepool.

There are also now over 700 Labour councillors across the country who will be voting ‘no’ – that has doubled in under a single week.

A poll by ICM for the Guardian has put a ‘No’ vote 16 points ahead among those likely to vote, within that a majority (53%) of Labour are voting No.

In addition, YouGov polling released by Channel 4 News a week ago found that, under current polling conditions, the Alternative Vote would disproportionately harm the Labour Party, more than any other political party. Labour would lose 13 seats under AV

Joan Ryan, Director of Labour NO to AV and former Vice Chair of the Labour Party, said:

“There can be no doubt, the Labour Party is making up its mind and it is voting NO to the expensive and unfair Alternative Vote system. If we want to return a strong Labour Government, Labour members and supporters should defend One Person, One Vote on 5 May.”

UPDATELabour List have updated their own Labour running totals and found 130 MPs will be voting No

One Comment leave one →
  1. April 19, 2011 12:35 PM

    Well, good for them. But remember that MPs and councillors make up only a tiny portion of the electorate, and that the referendum is about *us* and not *them*…

    I don’t understand Ross Kemp’s comment though: like him, I too “believe that equality is important, which is why I support One Person, One Vote”. But unlike him, I’ll be voting “Yes” to AV, because I want my “One Vote” to be a vote that counts and that reflects my convictions, rather than the one wasted and/or tactical vote that FPTP is likely to offer me.

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