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Tories lend phone bank to No to AV campaign

Michael Crick | 13:44 UK time, Thursday, 14 April 2011

The Conservatives are reinforcing their efforts to secure a No vote in the AV Referendum.

From this evening their phone bank at the party HQ at 30 Millbank will be open to supporters who want to ring voters in the South East to urge them to reject the Alternative Vote.

An email sent out to Tory supporters this morning says:

"Our central London GENEVA call centre will be up and running again at CCHQ from tonight through to May 5th. Can you spare an hour or so to come in and help make calls?"

Alternatively, the Conservatives are offering to supply supporters with a set "simple script" and a list of phone numbers so that people can phone voters from home. They reckon phone canvassers can work at a rate of 20-30 voters an hour.


  • Comment number 1.

    Ok for the Tories to front the NO campaign....just keep Clegg up front for the YES lot...

  • Comment number 2.


    Irony is not dead. But Distance Dave is never going to get it.

  • Comment number 3.

    It used to be that on more nuanced voting issues I'd simply look at the pols in support that I can't abide, and do the reverse.

    This time, there is the added input of celebs and in-theory impartial, 'ahem', 'reporters' to add to the mix.

    Getting clearer alllll the time.

  • Comment number 4.

    What AV campaigners are overlooking is that just changing the system does not mean it will change voting behaviour. What will happen if over 50% of voters use just one preference (split amongst a numer of candidates) which may happen?

    Michael Cricks example of 100 votes showed the 'winner' with only 45%, which as I understand would not be the case, still 5% short of the '50% threshold requirement of all valid votes cast' according to the Electoral Reform Society.

  • Comment number 5.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 6.

    By the way, why haven't THOSE FACTS OF FUNDAMENTALLY FLAWED ELECTORAL CONDITIONS been raised by the Newsnight team when questioning politicians on the subject ?
    Isn't it high time you all do?

  • Comment number 7.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 8.

    We're not getting far with revealing THOSE FACTS OF FUNDAMENTALLY FLAWED ELECTORAL CONDITIONS here are we. Why not? Perhaps the portals of perception will be opened on the next attempt...(if 'referred for further consideration' isn't just a euphemism for 'disappeared'! - Did Stalin die?). Perhaps the 'BBC moderators' will feed THOSE FACTS OF FUNDAMENTALLY FLAWED ELECTORAL CONDITIONS to the BBC 2 Newsnight team and we will actually find some REAL QUESTIONS being put to the AV v FPTP BOGUS REFERENDUM political puppets and puppeteers in the public interest.

  • Comment number 9.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 10.

    Question for Newsnight 26 April 2011

    Perhaps Michael Crick could ask the "Yes to AV" camp that sports the banner "A Fairer System" the following question?

    A panel of six candidates would allow a voter to rank all six in order of preference. The AV system will use those preferences. This means that a voter could have up to six bites of the voting cherry, whereas a voter who chooses a candidate as his/her first preference only one.

    This process denies the democratic concept on "one man, one vote".

    To equalise the situation, why cannot a voter indicate his/her primary preference for the same candidate up to six times (in a six-person board) This would make the system more equal democratically.

    If not, why not?

  • Comment number 11.

    Re your title, Mr Crick: 'Tories lend phone bank to No to AV campaign'.
    It's a well known fact that the Tories are well practiced in the dark arts of vote gerrymandering by mobilising and shuffling their multiple property owning multiple electoral roll registrants across the UK to swing voting outcomes their way.
    You would do well to take a close look at the ongoing, fascinating and progressively UK electorally health giving 'Kevin Lavery Challenge' at:
    You will find there good reasons to have no faith in the integrity and validity of this proposed AV v FPTP 'referendum' and whatever its outcomes may turn out to be whatsoever.


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