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Nornally a three way spit in the rightwing vote BNP/UKIP/Con would be a good way to minimise their seats, but with a PR system it doesn't work out that way - provided each get over. c. 5-10% in most constituencies.  With a low poll that should be very doable.  Hell maybe even libertas will steal a few votes!  Because the votes aren't transferable (as in Ireland), a vote for such minor parties below the d'Hondt threshold are basically wasted votes.

It would however damage the Tory credibility and performance if they were forced to compete with the others in a general election.  The problem for Labour is that they don't appear to have a credible alternative to Brown.  Cameron has been "brand building" for a while and it is difficult to see who could compete against him.

Can you see even a "green shoots" scenario saving Labour?

notes from no w here

by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Wed May 6th, 2009 at 12:08:35 PM EST
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See the table in European Parliament election, 2009 (United Kingdom): Constituencies & representation.

You're guaranteed a seat in South East England with 9% of the vote, in London and North West England with 11% of the vote, in the East of England with 12% of the vote, and in the rest with 15% to 25% of the vote.

In the North West constituency where Nick Griffin is running, the last (9th) MEP was elected with a quota of 7.95% - This was LibDem Saj Karim who later defected to the Tories presumably doubting that the Lib Dems would be able to win two seats out of only 8 in 2009.

The 8th MEP (Labour's Robert Atkins) was elected with a quota of 8.1% - The BNP got 6.4% of the vote.

The 7th MEP was a Tory at 9.1% and the 6th MEP was went to the UKIP with 11.7%.

There is plenty of room for the UKIP to leak support towards the BNP and still have both of them win an MEP regardless of the Green Party campaign to stop the BNP, and with Labour and the Lib Dems losing one MEP each. But Griffin does have to score 8% of the vote.

Most economists teach a theoretical framework that has been shown to be fundamentally useless. -- James K. Galbraith

by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed May 6th, 2009 at 12:37:29 PM EST
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Saj Karim was indeed rewarded with a safe 2nd place on the Tory candidate list for the North West.

Most economists teach a theoretical framework that has been shown to be fundamentally useless. -- James K. Galbraith
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed May 6th, 2009 at 12:40:30 PM EST
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