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Recent Elections
Statistics and Analysis…read more

Slide 2

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2010 UK General Election
Party Number of seats % of votes % of seats
Conservative 307 36.1 47.5
Labour 258 29 39.9
Liberal Democrat 57 23 8.8
Northern Ireland 17 1.7 2.6
SNP 6 1.7 0.9
Plaid Cymru 3 0.6 0.5
Green Party 1 1 0.2
Source: BBC…read more

Slide 3

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Was the result `normal'?
Yes; the outcome was predictable No; despite these traditional outcomes,
and in line with past results 2010 was a very different election
· The LDs were discriminated against and · The disadvantage suffered by the
their disadvantage actually grew Conservatives was less pronounced; the
· Labour and Conservatives had their value of the vote for Cons. was equal to
that for Lab.
`normal' proportion of the seats. This
was 86.9% similar to the elections of · A minor party managed to win a
parliamentary seat; this is something of a
1997, 2001 and 2005. breakthrough
· The smaller parties fared badly with · There was a significant fall in the
only the Green party winning a seat proportion of the national vote won by
· The Labour party did disproportionately the two parties. Between 1979 and 2005,
well: achieved 29% of the vote which the main parties won between 70 and
converted to 39.9% of the seats 80% of the national vote but in 2010 this
proportion fell to just over 65%
· The turnout was at a normal level at
· The most unusual outcome of the
just over 65% and cannot be used to election was the fact that no single party
explain the unusual outcome won an overall majority in the House of
· The value of votes remained unequal Commons. This result has not been seen
­ Conservatives: 34,370 votes per seat won since February 1974.
­ Labour: 33,370 votes per seat won
­ LibDems: 119,944 votes per seat won…read more

Slide 4

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TV Debates: why choose to include
· The decision to move towards US style politics was
controversial itself. However, it was decided that it would be
useful following the increased public dislike of MPs following
the expenses scandal as well as falling levels of political
· `After a terrible year for politicians these debates will be an
opportunity to start re-engaging people with politics... I hope
an open, honest and vigorous debate will encourage more
people to have their say at the ballot box'- Nick Clegg (BBC
· The Lib Dems had always pushed for the debates as they felt
that they would gain from additional exposure and it would
allow them to be on an equal footing with the two main parties
following a lack of funding and media access.…read more

Slide 5

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TV Debates: what was their actual
impact upon the 2010 General
· The ICM poll completed on 11th April, four days before the first debate,
showed the Lib Dems trailing on 20%, behind Labour on 31% and the
Conservatives on 37%. This was broadly in line with previous ICM polls
taken since July 2009.
· However, following the first debate, the support rose to 24% for the LDs
with 51% believing that the LD leader had `won' the opening debate. 29%
believed that Clegg would make the best Prime Minister (a similar number
favoured Cameron)
· The LDs increased their share of vote from 22% in 2005 to 23% in 2010,
securing only 1.8m votes fewer than Labour.
· It should be noted though, even after the first debate, only around 24% of
those polled by ICM said they intended to vote LD. A return of 23% should
therefore not be seen as a failure.
· Despite the TV debates, the Lib Dems returned fewer MPs to Parliament in
2010 than in 2005. 27 of the 57 seats that they won were in the list of top
200 with the smallest majorities i.e. They were lucky to win as many as
they did…read more

Slide 6

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2012 UK By-Elections
Election date + Reason Result Turnout Swing Swing Swing To
constituency % % From
29.3.12 Bradford Ill-health Respect 50.8 36.6 Labour Respect
West (gain)
15.11.12 Resigned Labour 18.2 16.8 Lib Dem Labour
Manchester (hold)
15.11.12 Corby Resigned Labour 44.8 12.7 Con. Labour
15.11.12 Cardiff Resigned Labour 25.4 8.4 Con. Labour
South and Penarth (hold)
29.11.12 Croydon Death Labour 26.4 8 Con. Labour
North (hold)
29.11.12 Death Labour 25.9 3.3 UKIP Labour
Middlesbrough (hold)
29.11.12 Resigned Labour 33.6 7.1 Labour UKIP
Rotherham (hold)…read more

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Old Sir


An interesting and useful piece of work for students looking to discuss the impact of TV debates (and some other factors) on general elections in the UK and USA, 2010 and 2012. The scope is limited by the absence of evidence relating to other factors in both the UK and USA and any conclusions should be based on more extensive reading.

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