Election day confusion

Whether or not the response to Nick Clegg's offer to change the dates of the Welsh Assembly Election is childish or sensible, I find the offer totally confusing.

The reason behind the offer is to ensure that devolved and Westminster elections don't clash, so far so good – elections to different establishments shouldn't clash. But the reason why they might clash is because the Lib Dems have decided that Westminster should have fixed term elections; because they believe that the ad hoc way that Westminster elections have been called in the past are undemocratic.

So in order to stop ad hoc elections to Westminster we get rid of fixed term elections to the Assembly by giving the Assembly a two year leeway in which to hold ad-hoc elections! This is totally illogical.

If fixed term is good and ad hoc bad the problem isn't solved by switching from ad hoc in Westminster to fixed and swapping from fixed to ad hoc in Cardiff Bay!

Of course the clash is only caused because Gordon Brown called an ad hoc election on the first Thursday in May, which just happened to be the fixed date of devolved elections. Wouldn't the sensible answer to the problem be for Westminster to call its first fixed term election in September/October 2014; rather than causing problems by insisting that Gordon Brown's arbitrary decision to hold an election on May 6th 2010 should define the date of Westminster elections in perpetuity?


  1. A September / October date for an election would be bad for the Liberal Democrats. The Electoral register would be old and new students would not be registered in the university towns and cities, where the party has targeted the new student vote. May is the ideal date for Liberal Democrat gerrymandering of the student vote; they will never give up on that date for any election!

    Gordon Brown's biggest mistake was not calling an election whilst the kids were at home on holiday!

  2. Why aren't the Lib Dems pushing for a fixed term of 4 years at Westminster? They introduced an amendment calling for this while they were in opposition, and 4 years has been pretty standard for UK Parliamentary terms.

    Anon, the Lib Dems have done well from the student vote because they made a big deal about opposing tuition fees, now that they have done such a public and bare faced U turn on this issue, I doubt they will hold many of their student marginals next time.