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Election Results

So, I woke up this morning to discover that the BNP have been elected to a seat in the North-West. As far I am aware, the North-West isn't actually full of BNP supporters, although there are a few and they have the right to vote to express their views.

Turnout was 1,651,825 of 5,206,474, so about 1/3 and BNP got 8% of the vote.

BNP supporters seem unlikely to be apathetic about these things, so it's probably safe to assume that most of them turned out. Therefore, if all 5,206,474 people actually turned out to vote they would have only had around 2.5% of the vote and not won the seat at all.

It is therefore time to slap anyone in the north-west (as pointed out by frayer the same level of apathy was all over the country and it could just have easily been elsewhere) who didn't vote, with a wet fish.

Then again, given I voted for the far left, I suppose I can't really complain about people voting for extremist parties, even if the majority of them were at the opposite end of the spectrum to me.

Other than that it's amazing how little difference this seems to have made to the makeup of the EU parlement. Only 5 changes of seats out of 72! It somewhat demoralising to go out and vote only to find the local MEPs are unchanged.

So much for the predicted swing to the left, but I suppose that was never going to happen.


( 10 comments — Leave a comment )
(Deleted comment)
8th Jun, 2009 15:55 (UTC)
Fair point

Interestingly the makeup of the seats for London and the North-west are 7/8th the same (3 Conservatives, 2 Labour, 1 Lib Dem, 1 UKIP + 1 other - BNP in North-west, Green in London), so they aren't actually that different in terms of results, it's just the North West gives the bigger news storey.

And, yes, the BNP got a sizeable proportion of the votes here too (the BBC has it as even worst then you at 86,000 or 4.9% of the votes), so it could easily of happened here too.

It seems worth highlighting it though as an effect of voter apathy, so those that choose not to know clearly what the result of that decision was.
(Deleted comment)
8th Jun, 2009 16:34 (UTC)
I believe I just agreed with that?

I certainly wouldn't put all the blame for these attitudes towards the north. As I said in the post, I'm fairly certain the north isn't full of BNP supporters anymore than the south is.

It could have just as easily happened here, it just happened to happen there. However, wherever it happens, both now and in the future, it needs to be shown to those that chose not to vote as a consequence of their choice, but, yes, it is worth highlighting to those who didn't vote elsewhere as a potential consequence for them too.

I don't actually intend to go and slap anyone with a wet fish though. If nothign else it would be really cruel to the fish as they really had nothing to do with the BNP getting in.
(Deleted comment)
8th Jun, 2009 17:21 (UTC)
hmmm, yes, very unfair on them all.

Perhaps, we'd best make it seaweed instead.
8th Jun, 2009 15:57 (UTC)
The BNP also polled lower than the Swedish Pirate party according to @Bengoldacre

I guess that's voter apathy for you...
8th Jun, 2009 16:25 (UTC)
Well, you really can complain about people voting for extremist parties, if the extremist party in question want to expel everybody who's a little bit brown and are on record as saying there's no such thing as rape. They're almost certainly scarier than whoever you voted for.
8th Jun, 2009 23:03 (UTC)
Yes, although the objectives of the SPGB are somewhat extreme, they do seem a bit friendlier then those of the BNP :-)

However, the main issue is not with the number of BNP supporters who are voting, but the number of non-BNP voters who aren't.
9th Jun, 2009 06:50 (UTC)
Interesting assumptions about the apathy of different groups, how would you back that up?

I've generally suspected that voter apathy may be a useful way of giving the informed and passionate more say than the ignorant and undecided.

I'm not saying I'm happy the BNP are in, just that I think the primary cause of them being in is people voting for them.
9th Jun, 2009 18:41 (UTC)
It's certainly not an uncommon view, although admittedly that doesn't make it true.

However, if you hold extreme views (which you clearly do if your a BNP supporter), you are by definition not apathetic about them. It would seem likely that people who are not apathetic about their views would be less likely to be apathetic about voting for them.
9th Jun, 2009 19:11 (UTC)
It's a comforting thing to believe - it let's us keep thinking of the BNP as a tiny, almost irrelavent, minority - so I'm not at all surprised that it's a popular thing to believe.

I'm not sure why agreeing with a position which is very different from the mainstream (which is all extreme means in this context) would make one by definition hold them with extreme vigour, but perhaps we could argue that anyone who didn't would probably give them up in the face of so much opposition.
( 10 comments — Leave a comment )

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