Sunday 28 November 2010

Ireland voted yes, we shouldn't make the same mistake

Sat watching X Factor it struck me how crazy some votes can be. Unfortunately the public don't always vote for the best on offer. It's the same in many referendums.

The argument put forward by the Yes camp in Ireland's referendum on the Lisbon Treaty was almost as ridiculous as some of Wagner's performances. The Yes vote was achieved by essentially arguing that ratifying the Lisbon Treaty would secure the economy and create jobs. Just over a year later and Ireland's economy has collapsed.

To say that arguments made at referendums are ludicrous is an understatement. This will be the case in next year's AV referendum. The Yes campaign will claim that AV will enhance democracy. What they really want is to secure AV as a stepping stone towards full Proportional Representation (PR).

The last time there was a UK-wide referendum was in 1975, when the public voted in favour of staying in the European Community, which later became the European Union. This wasn't what the public voted for. Ireland voted for economic stability and were misled. If we vote for AV next May we'll be making the same mistake.

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