Britain's Electoral Reform Referendum Explained By Kittens


As part of the deal that brought about the present British governing coalition, the Conservatives agreed to the demands of the Liberal Democrats—Knifecrime Island’s perennial third or fourth party, depending on which iteration of their composition you are scoring them by—to hold a referendum on electoral reform. Under the current system, known as “first past the post,” the candidate who receives the most votes in his or her constituency wins the seat. This is problematic to some, who see it as unfair in cases where candidates who are, for example, on the left of the spectrum, receive more votes in total than the candidate on the right, but still lose the seat because the candidate of the right received an individual plurality. This contentious referendum asks whether Britain should switch to Alternative Voting (actually, a modified version of alternative voting), in which voters select candidates in order of preference, and ballots are rearranged until one candidate has a total majority based on the number of ballots reflecting—oh, who are we kidding, only the most dedicated psephologist could make any sense of this. It’s much easier to understand when it’s clarified by kitties. Enjoy.