NEW POLL: Should the Lib Dems back the seat winners or the vote winners?

by Stephen Tall on March 28, 2009

Yes, I know, it’s a Hung Parliament question, and all Lib Dems hate those – after all, we’re a political party in our own right, not just an addendum to one of the other two consevative, reactionary, estabishment parties that trade under the names Labour and Tories.

But still, there’s a chance, a slim chance, that the next general election will see no one party emerge with an overall majority. In which case, the Lib Dems will be under scrutiny like never before, our every move examined under a microscope. So it’s as well to be prepared. And this question – posed yesterday at PoliticalBetting.com – gets to the heart of our dilemma, for, as Mike Smithson points out, it’s conceivable that Labour might emerge as the party with most MPs with just 33% of the popular vote, compared with 39% for the Tories:

The line that has come out of the Lib Dems is that they “wouldn’t oppose” the party with the most seats being able to form a minority government. By that they mean that they would abstain on the Queen’s Speech and not vote against. But what that be right in this situation? (sic)

I like posing this to Lib Dems because it goes to the heart of their demands for fair votes. Would they keep in power the party that had lost so much and was so far behind?

So, let’s turn the question over to LDV readers, and ask you: In the event of a Hung Parliament, should the Lib Dems allow the seat winners or the popular vote winners to form a government?

Your options, self-explanatorily enough, are:

The winner of the popular vote;
The winner of the most seats;
Neither: we should oppose whatever the circumstances;
Don’t know / Other

Let the debate commence…