Originally Posted by Uppercut
You're taking quite a principled stand that isn't founded in reality- maybe my example isn't clear enough- let's rename A "the Social Democratic Party", B "the Democratic Socialist Party" and C "The BNP".
And now explain to a black man why he should vote for A rather than B.
Because if he believes in A more than B he should vote A. If C wins, then alas for the poor bugger they are the choice of the electorate. Its upto him what he does next. If he feels he can still live in a UK society that democratically elects the BNP, he can stay and defend his rights, fight for what he believes is right etc. However if he feels the country has gone too extreme for him to live there, then he can have the seat next to me on the plane, as i'll be leaving such a puking cesspit of a country to rot away too.
The fact is, thats a nice extreme example to back up your argument, a good theoretical 'Well it could
happen'.... In such extremes people do not act the normal way: Firstly the politicians themselves would probably work together so that A and B wern't equally strong candidates, probably encourage a straight A v C race. Secondly a coalition might prevent C winning, thirdly if all else failed the public would rise.... Unless of course C won 50%+ of the popular vote, then anyone with half a clue would leave the country.
The fact is its very rarely that extreme, and people don't face decisions like that. A, B and C are usually reasonable well adjusted folks (candidates like the BNP are usually letters X, Y and Z in this scenario, and dont factor in the final outcome), and although their policies differ, they arn't going to destroy the country overnight and do irreversible damage. If you believe in politician A, but more people believe in politician C than the rest, why is it your imperitive to go out of your way to damage the chances of these people getting the representative they would like? And to do it in a way that spites your own first choice too?
FPTP may not be the best, but if people play fair, it is fair. I refuse to endorse any system that is designed to limit people's prime choice.
Also, in a AV system, say if its applied to a constituency, and no party gets 50% first time round, but Labour did after the Lib Dems were kicked out... Why should that Labour candidate be then allowed to sit as a fully labour representative? He's a coalition MP, as he's in based on the Lib Dem vote going to him over his rival. He should have to share the seat with a Lib Dem MP on a proportional basis... Otherwise the system is returning a candidate that doesnt reflect what people voted, and doing exactly what FPTP is criticised for.