Electoral Reform

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 10:46 pm on 8th June 2020.

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Photo of Chloe Smith Chloe Smith Assistant Whip, Minister of State (Cabinet Office) 10:46 pm, 8th June 2020

If the hon. Lady will allow me to make my second point, I will be happy to give way. The second important feature is accountability, which with first past the post is linked to place. It can be achieved in other ways, but with first past the post we all get the kind of accountability that comes when an MP walks down the street and looks into the eyes of their constituents. It is important to seek a system that has that in its design, so that there is not some relatively difficult to understand method of apportioning the number of votes, but instead a clear method of who came first—the clue is in the name. That gives citizens, voters, a clear method of holding somebody to account. MPs can be thrown out as easily as they were voted in, and they are given the accountability to conduct that job, and to do so strictly by reporting to a place, and to people who use the same public services as they do in their constituencies. All of that links the politics of place with accountability.