Model motions for Proportional Representation

Put forward one of these motions to your branch or Constituency Labour Party. The text can be changed, added to or combined however you like. Once passed by your CLP, these motions should be actioned by the executive in two ways:


Basic motion

___ Constituency / Branch Labour Party:

  • Calls upon the Labour Party to reject First Past the Post, the voting system currently used for General Elections, and to support the introduction of a form of Proportional Representation in which all votes count equally and seats match votes.

  • Calls upon the Justice and Home Affairs Policy Commission of the National Policy Forum to consult the party membership about their views on the above proposal in the next cycle of policy documents.


Detailed motion

___ Constituency / Branch Labour Party notes that:

  • The UK is one of only three major developed countries to use First Past the Post (FPTP) for general elections. Most developed countries use a form of Proportional Representation (PR), including the world’s most equal and progressive societies.

  • The Labour Party played a leading role in introducing forms of PR to the UK’s devolved parliaments and assemblies in Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and London.

  • There are systems of PR that retain a strong constituency link between MPs and their electorates and allow voters to vote for candidates rather than just party lists, while ensuring that all votes count equally and seats match votes.

  • Labour has promised a constitutional convention once in government, but this has not prevented us from pre-empting it by committing to other constitutional reforms such as an elected upper chamber and votes at sixteen. Labour has not yet even promised that the convention will consider electoral reform.

___ Constituency / Branch Labour Party believes that:

  • FPTP has too often gifted the Conservatives a parliamentary majority despite having the support of only a modest minority of the electorate. In fourteen of the last fifteen general elections, most people have voted for parties to the left of the Conservatives, yet the Tories have been in power for most of this time.

  • This has had devastating consequences for the people the Labour Party represents. Attacks on the welfare state, public services and workers’ rights have been carried out by successive Conservative governments that could not have held office under a proportional system. This has contributed to making the UK one of the most unequal societies in the OECD.

  • FPTP means voter inequality: some people’s votes carry greater weight than others. This compels Labour to concentrate resources on marginal constituencies to the detriment of voters in safe seats. A voting system in which every vote counts equally, wherever it is cast, is needed to address the worrying levels of alienation, division and mistrust in British politics.

  • Some people have voted Labour in every election for their whole lives without ever being represented by a Labour MP. With PR, all Labour voters could expect to be represented by a Labour MP who reflect their views, concerns and values.

___ Constituency / Branch Labour Party therefore calls:
  • Upon Labour to reject FPTP and to support the introduction of a form of PR in which all votes count equally and seats match votes.

  • Upon the Justice and Home Affairs Policy Commission of the National Policy Forum to consult the party membership about their views on the above proposal in the next cycle of policy documents.


Motion to affiliate with the Labour Campaign for Electoral Reform

___ Constituency / Branch Labour Party resolves:

  • To affiliate to the Labour Campaign for Electoral Reform.

  • To mandate our delegates at Labour Party conferences to support any motions that propose a move towards Proportional Representation.