Clause 1 — Referendum on the alternative vote system

Part of Royal Commission (London) – in the House of Commons at 7:45 pm on 12th October 2010.

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Photo of Julian Lewis Julian Lewis Conservative, New Forest East 7:45 pm, 12th October 2010

The hon. Gentleman knows that I much admire his tenacity, his persistence and especially his devotion to the aircraft carriers, which I share, but I have to tell him that, for some strange reason, the leader of the Liberal Democrats does not tend to take me into his confidence when it comes to his reasons on issues of this sort. All I have been able to give the hon. Gentleman is my judgment of the situation as I see it. It seems to me that the only logical explanation for insisting on the coincidence of dates is that it is believed that the fact that major elections will be going on in parts of the country where people are used to electoral systems other than first past the post makes it more likely that there will be a higher turnout in those areas and the people there will be more amenable to voting yes to a change in the electoral system. I am glad to see a number of hon. Members indicating their assent.