Northern Sol, on 20 May 2013 - 16:50, said:
If you look at the break-down in their seats, they'd be the second party behind Labour if not for the Alternate Vote system. They greatly benefit from "wasted votes" creating a lot of "top up" seats. It's difficult to compare results when the voting system is different.
How can the votes be 'wasted' if someone is benefiting from them?
Phew! I'm struggling to think of a more misinformed post than the one you've responded to, but, hey-ho. There are very few 'wasted' votes in Scottish parliamentary elections, or, to put it more accurately, very few wasted opinions.
Firstly, we do not use the Alternate(Alternative?) Vote system, not in Holyrood nor in council elections.
In Holyrood there are two parts to the election. 73 of the seats are elected on a single-member constituency basis, using first-past-the-post - exactly the same as Westminster.
The vote share in this part was SNP 45.4%, Lab 31.7%, Con 13.9%, Lib Dem 7.9% (as this is part is cross-thread - UKIP 0.1%
This resulted in the following seats: SNP 53, Lab 15, Con 3, Lib Dem 2 - a massive majority, and you can see why we didn't settle for just fptp!
The second part of the electoral system is the regional list system. The country is divided into regions and each party puts up a list of candidates in preference order. This enables the voter to use their constituency vote tactically, or to vote for an individual, but vote for the party of their choice in the regional. The count uses a D'Hondt method to allocate seats, and each allocation attempts to bring the proportion of seats into line with the vote for each party
The vote share in this part was SNP 44.0%, Lab 26.3%, Con 12.4%, Lib Dem 5.2%, Greens 4.4%, Independent 1.1% (UKIP 0.9)
Resulting in seats allocated SNP 16, Lab 22, Con 12, Lib Dem 3, Green 2, Ind 1.
Total seats SNP 69, Lab 37, Con 15, Lib dem 5, Green 2, Ind 1.
So, in both sections, SNP got around about 44-45% of the vote - incredible in an established 4 party, almost 5 party environment - and got the majority that the system was designed to avoid.
Edited by Methven Hornet, 20 May 2013 - 10:14 PM.