Clause 1 — Referendum on the alternative vote system

Part of Royal Commission (London) – in the House of Commons at 6:45 pm on 12th October 2010.

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Photo of Sadiq Khan Sadiq Khan Shadow Lord Chancellor and Shadow Secretary of State for Justice, Shadow Lord Chancellor and Shadow Secretary of State for Justice 6:45 pm, 12th October 2010

The best that I can do for the hon. Gentleman is to quote from the evidence that the excellent Select Committee on Political and Constitutional Reform received, which said:

"There should be no distraction from the national assembly election. That is why we have agreed with other parties in the Assembly that our own referendum should not be held on the same day as the Assembly elections."

The important point is that for very good reasons the Assembly has decided not to have its referendum on the same day as the election, because it does not want to blur the issues. It would be counter-productive for there to be three, or two, elections in the early part of 2011; it would be confusing and blur the issues.