Nick Clegg and AV

The Guardian writes that the No2AV campaign are planning to target Nick Clegg personally:

Campaigners against electoral reform are to distribute six million leaflets taunting Nick Clegg for describing the proposed alternative vote (AV) system as a “miserable little compromise” before the last general election.

The leaflet campaign is part of a push by the cross-party “no” camp to associate AV in the public mind with the Liberal Democrat leader and his party, whose popularity has plummeted since the pre-election upsurge of “Cleggmania”.

The Guardian has produced this mock-up of the No2AV campaign’s proposed anti-Clegg website:

Mockup of anti-Clegg website

While Clegg isn’t universally popular, and he does support AV, his unpopularity is actually a reason why it’s better to vote AV. Let’s say you don’t like Nick Clegg, and want to get rid of him. If you live in Sheffield Hallam, then AV makes it easier to get rid of him: all you have to do is rank all the other candidates, in whatever order you choose, above Clegg. If most of the voters do that, Clegg will definitely lose.

You can’t say that about FPTP, because it’s common — in fact usual — for MPs to get elected with less than half the vote. To unseat a sitting MP with FPTP, voters need to co-ordinate their votes on the single candidate who has the best chance of beating the incumbent. But with AV, you can vote for all the candidates you prefer over the incumbent, meaning that the voting system helps the voters co-ordinate on a candidate.

Most people don’t live in Sheffield Hallam. But Nick Clegg is not the first politician to break his promises, and he won’t be the last. AV is your guarantee that if your MP breaks his promises, his constituents can kick him out.

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