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Make Votes Matter is a political pressure group based in the United Kingdom which campaigns for proportional representation. It seeks to replace the first-past-the-post voting system with one of proportional representation for elections to the British House of Commons.

Make Votes Matter
Make Votes Matter logo.png
Founded2015; 4 years ago (2015)
London, United Kingdom
TypeNon-governmental organisation
FocusDemocracy, electoral reform, elections
Location
Area served
United Kingdom
MethodLobbying, grassroots campaigning, education
Key people
  • Owen Winter, Spokesperson
  • Klina Jordan, Co-founder and facilitator
  • Joe Sousek, Facilitator
Websitehttp://www.makevotesmatter.org.uk/

Contents

OverviewEdit

Make Votes Matter is "the cross-party campaign to introduce Proportional Representation to the House of Commons, led by democratically-organised activists in a united movement for electoral reform."[1] It was co-founded by Owen Winter, Klina Jordan and other activists.[2] It advocates for the replacement of the first-past-the-post currently used for elections to the House of Commons. Make Votes Matter does not advocate a particular alternative voting system but instead campaigns for one based on the principles established in the Make Votes Matter Declaration. These are that a voting system should ensure:

  • That those who are entitled to vote have a vote that counts, and counts equally – no matter who they vote for, or where they live;
  • That the share of seats a party gets should closely reflect the share of votes the people give them.[3]

ActivitiesEdit

In the weeks following the 2015 United Kingdom general election a number of online petitions calling for electoral reform emerged, coordinated by individuals and organisations such as the Electoral Reform Society and Unlock Democracy. These petitions received over 477,000 signatures and were delivered to 10 Downing Street by a cross-party group of politicians.[4] Through these petitions, a group of activists formed to continue campaigning for proportional representation.

In February 2016, Make Votes Matter organised a cross-party summit to discuss how to achieve a reformed voting system attended by politicians including Chuka Umunna and Natalie Bennett.[5]

In May 2016, the organisation orchestrated an open letter to Leader of the Labour Party Jeremy Corbyn signed by 7 MPs and over 10,000 members of the public, including 2,000 Labour members.[6]

Most recently, the campaign has orchestrated national days of action for Proportional Representation such as Hungry for Democracy on 6 February 2018 in which 407 people joined a 24 hour "hunger strike".[7] Those that took part in the day of action included public figures, MEPs, and MPs such as Stephen Kinnock.[8] Later on in 2018, the campaign organised a nationwide day of action - Demand Democracy Day - on 30 June as a prelude to the inaugural Cabinet Office-organised National Democracy Week.[9] The action day saw volunteers organise events in over 60 towns and cities across the UK from Truro to Aberdeen.[10]

Make Votes Matter is supported by an alliance of organisations and individuals that have endorsed the 'Make Votes Matter Declaration'. This includes the Green Party of England and Wales, the Liberal Democrats, Plaid Cymru, the Scottish National Party and UKIP as well as Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell, Michael Sheen, Frankie Boyle, the Electoral Reform Society and others.[11]

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Make Votes Matter". Retrieved 2 August 2016.
  2. ^ "Our team". Make Votes Matter. Retrieved 20 May 2018.
  3. ^ "Make Votes Matter Declaration". Retrieved 2 August 2016.
  4. ^ "UKIP joins cross-party push for electoral reform". BBC. Retrieved 2 August 2016.
  5. ^ "Cross-party alliance draws up plan to secure proportional representation 'by 2021'". The Independent. Retrieved 2 August 2016.
  6. ^ "Labour MPs call on Jeremy Corbyn to back proportional representation in UK". The Independent. Retrieved 2 August 2016.
  7. ^ https://www.makevotesmatter.org.uk/news/2018/2/9/hungry4democracy
  8. ^ https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/feb/06/suffragettes-rethink-democracy-centenary?CMP=share_btn_tw
  9. ^ https://www.gov.uk/government/news/national-democracy-week-2018
  10. ^ https://www.makevotesmatter.org.uk/news/demand-democracy-day
  11. ^ "The Alliance: pro PR groups and public figures". Retrieved 2 August 2016.

External linksEdit