Why did UKIP win the European elections but won't win in the UK elections? Watch

UniMastermindBOSS
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How come they won yesterday, but the odds of them winning the UK elections are 66/1 and labour and conservatives seem to be the only two with a chance?

I don't follow politics but I'm curious.

If they got more votes yesterday, why wouldn't they get more votes in the UK elections?
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alexmufc1995
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(Original post by UniMastermindBOSS)
How come they won yesterday, but the odds of them winning the UK elections are 66/1 and labour and conservatives seem to be the only two with a chance?

I don't follow politics but I'm curious.

If they got more votes yesterday, why wouldn't they get more votes in the UK elections?
MEPs are elected through proportional representation in different regions. If UKIP get a third of the votes in an area, they'll be able to elect a third of the overall candidates for that region - as they did in many places last night.

The general election uses 'first past the post' system - so UKIP would have to win outright in the majority of the constituencies to gain power. Sadly for Farage, this won't happen.

Up the mighty Tories

EDIT: Also people vote differently in general elections. Many would have seen the Euro election as a chance to use UKIP as a protest vote. They probably won't see UKIP as truly serious contenders next year.
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username1221160
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Only about 1 in 10 of the voting population actually voted for them and a lot of those votes were protest votes. They received 20% of the vote in the 2009 EU elections, but only managed 3% in the 2010 general election. Getting 3 or 4 MPs in the next election will be considered a massive success for them.

So basically, the general election will have less voter apathy, less protest votes and a first past the post system that disadvantages them.
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UniMastermindBOSS
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That makes sense, thanks
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gladders
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People take Westminster elections more seriously. Locals and European elections are silly season - the consequence of the vote on the person's life, on taxes, jobs, education and so on, is minuscule compared to what Parliament has responsibility for. So while UKIP has had a good run over the past week, people will think twice before electing them to real power.
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Theflyingbarney
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Partly for the proportional representation reason laid out above, and partly because UKIP are high-profile in relation to the EU and similar (since it's by far their most prominent policy) but as for the rest of their policies most people either don't know or realise that they're mostly unremarkable at best, tending towards naff.
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OMGWTFBBQ
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Two reasons:

1/ People don't really care very much about European Union elections as MEPs have very little power. Therefore they can elect on principle ("I don't like the EU") rather than practicality ("I work for the state and therefore a Labour Government guarantees my job security").

2/ The way the votes are counted/transferred into seats is different. In EU elections, the country is split into a few large sections, which are given around 8-12 seats (depending on the population). The seats are allocated according to the percentage of the vote within the region

EXAMPLE/
A region has 10 seats.
The votes are
40% Conservative 30% UKIP 20% Labour 10% Lib Dem
The seats are (approximately) proportional and thus
4 Conservative 3 UKIP 2 Labour 1 Lib Dem

However in Westminster elections the country is split into a very large number of very small areas, each with one seat. The highest vote in that area gets the seat (called First Past The Post)
The votes in a given area are
40% Conservative 30% UKIP 20% Labour 10% Lib Dem
The seat is won by the Conservatives.

The problem for UKIP is that over the whole country, they may get 30%. But if in every area, some other party (Conservative or Labour) gets more than them, they get no seats.

UKIP's support comes from all backgrounds - rich, poor, rural, urban.
Whereas Labour traditionally gets poor, urban and Conservatives traditionally get rich, rural.

The areas are so small that one whole area is usually either poor and urban or rich and rural, and so usually naturally a majority of people within an area are either Conservatives or Labour.

Thus UKIP miss out on a small scale because people live in clusters of similar wealth levels, so there are few ares (if any) where it is able to beat other parties even though overall it will get a high % of the vote.

Obviously lots of simplifications above, but hope that helps.
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anarchism101
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In addition to what's been pointed out above, I'd note that there is a minor effect from the (relative) higher-profile candidates from smaller parties.

For example, in the Tories and Labour, the highest ranking 200+ figures within the party are probably already MPs, meaning that MEP candidates are comparatively low-ranking figures within the party who even supporters are unlikely to have heard of.

For smaller parties on the other hand, those that actually get elected MEPs are likely to be relatively senior party figures, who can have a minor effect at bringing in more votes.
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Swanbow
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First Past The Post voting system. UKIP could get around 20% of the vote and still have very few to no seats. The system rewards geographic concentration of support in a constituency. If you are a Tory voter in an industrial northern city your vote is as worthless as that of Labour supporter in the a rural Home Counties constituency. It is a flawed voting system which favours the established parties. The Lib Dems suffered quite a bit under it, gaining a far larger proportion of the vote than the number of seats in parliament. Just to give you an idea of how terrible it can be, in the 1983 General election the SDP-Liberal alliance gained 25% of the vote, but only won 23 seats whereas Labour gained 27% of the vote and won 209 seats. UKIP polled just under a million votes at the last election, the fourth largest party but didn't win a single seat.

There is also the factor that people are more willing to vote for a 'protest party' at the EU election to send a messages to the main parties. A lot of people who voted UKIP will revert back to a main party in the general election, no doubt due to tactical voting.
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No Man
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Because the people that are voted in the EU elections (i.e MEPs) are just the Congress of the unelected EU commission and have no influence on domestic policies.
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justanotherposter
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The couple of people I know voted UKIP did it as a protest vote, it's a message to Labour and the Tories that they need to get their act together, a similar thing happened in the last general election, the Lib Dems had a lot of support in the opinion polls but didn't get much support when people actually voted.
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RayApparently
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Proportional Representation.

FPTP in the General Election will crucify UKIP.
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Erzan
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1. It uses a first past the post system and not a proportional representation system, so a 20% vote will not result in a 20% of seats.
2. People sadly treat the EU elections as a protest and so like to vote for non established parties to punish the mainstream ones.
3. UKIP still act like a one issue party, they go on about immigration and the EU. But they lack a coherent manifesto for national government. They do not have a clear strategy for the economy, health, education or welfare.

(Original post by No Man)
Because the people that are voted in the EU elections (i.e MEPs) are just the Congress of the unelected EU commission and have no influence on domestic policies.
Elected governments select Commissioners. But if you hate the Commission you must hate the House of Lords.


(Original post by OMGWTFBBQ)
Two reasons:

1/ People don't really care very much about European Union elections as MEPs have very little power. Therefore they can elect on principle ("I don't like the EU") rather than practicality ("I work for the state and therefore a Labour Government guarantees my job security").

2/ The way the votes are counted/transferred into seats is different. In EU elections, the country is split into a few large sections, which are given around 8-12 seats (depending on the population). The seats are allocated according to the percentage of the vote within the region

EXAMPLE/
A region has 10 seats.
The votes are
40% Conservative 30% UKIP 20% Labour 10% Lib Dem
The seats are (approximately) proportional and thus
4 Conservative 3 UKIP 2 Labour 1 Lib Dem

However in Westminster elections the country is split into a very large number of very small areas, each with one seat. The highest vote in that area gets the seat (called First Past The Post)
The votes in a given area are
40% Conservative 30% UKIP 20% Labour 10% Lib Dem
The seat is won by the Conservatives.

The problem for UKIP is that over the whole country, they may get 30%. But if in every area, some other party (Conservative or Labour) gets more than them, they get no seats.

UKIP's support comes from all backgrounds - rich, poor, rural, urban.
Whereas Labour traditionally gets poor, urban and Conservatives traditionally get rich, rural.

The areas are so small that one whole area is usually either poor and urban or rich and rural, and so usually naturally a majority of people within an area are either Conservatives or Labour.

Thus UKIP miss out on a small scale because people live in clusters of similar wealth levels, so there are few ares (if any) where it is able to beat other parties even though overall it will get a high % of the vote.

Obviously lots of simplifications above, but hope that helps.
What! You are kidding right? UKIP cannot get votes in places like Glasgow, Leeds, Manchester, Birmingham and London. It doesn't take a genius to guess why. You cannot go on national TV and complain about people speaking different languages, to go to black countries and so on then get support from multicultural urban areas.
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OMGWTFBBQ
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(Original post by Erzan)
What! You are kidding right? UKIP cannot get votes in places like Glasgow, Leeds, Manchester, Birmingham and London. It doesn't take a genius to guess why. You cannot go on national TV and complain about people speaking different languages, to go to black countries and so on then get support from multicultural urban areas.
I voted in an urban Manchester ward - UKIP were only 100 votes away from the Labour vote of around 1500 for my council seat. So that is clearly not true, almost all Manchester seats where UKIP stood they came a close second to Labour.
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OMGWTFBBQ
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(Original post by Erzan)
Elected governments select Commissioners. But if you hate the Commission you must hate the House of Lords.
I know this wasn't address to me but yes; I hate the House of Lords for exactly the same reason as hating the EU. Unelected, unaccountable bureaucrats.
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Erzan
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(Original post by OMGWTFBBQ)
I voted in an urban Manchester ward - UKIP were only 100 votes away from the Labour vote of around 1500 for my council seat. So that is clearly not true, almost all Manchester seats where UKIP stood they came a close second to Labour.
lol you mean Moston? But since UKIP polled 7.6% over all in Manchester then 92% of Manchester rejected UKIP. They just don't have support from big cities.

(Original post by OMGWTFBBQ)
I know this wasn't address to me but yes; I hate the House of Lords for exactly the same reason as hating the EU. Unelected, unaccountable bureaucrats.
This is so annoying.

Look, what exactly are you talking about because just calling the EU unelected and unaccountable is very simplistic.

The EU parliament is directly elected by the citizens under a proportional voting system.

The EU council of ministers are from elected national parliaments. For example George Osborne sits on the Finance Council and he is an elected British MP and so are all the other 27 finance, foreign, defence and so on ministers.

The Commission is accountable to the directly elected EU parliament! Where on earth do citizens directly elect their finance or foreign minister?! The commissioners are government ministers, they can only become so when the President of the commission selects his or her team (like all leaders do) and the EU parliament agrees. Are you suggesting government ministers should be directly elected by people?
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OMGWTFBBQ
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(Original post by Erzan)
lol you mean Moston? But since UKIP polled 7.6% over all in Manchester then 92% of Manchester rejected UKIP. They just don't have support from big cities.
That's lies lies and damned statistics from you I'm afraid. UKIP didn't stand in every ward, and therefore your 92% rejecting UKIP figure is not accurate and many wards were not given the opportunity to support them.

What people forget with "multicultural" areas is that there is a large non-immigrant population that was there before the immigrants settled, and they often aren't best pleased about the resulting strain on services.

This is so annoying.

Look, what exactly are you talking about because just calling the EU unelected and unaccountable is very simplistic.

The EU parliament is directly elected by the citizens under a proportional voting system.

The EU council of ministers are from elected by national parliaments. For example George Osborne sits on the Finance Council and he is an elected British MP and so are all the other 27 finance ministers.

The Commission is accountable to the directly elected EU parliament! Where on earth do citizens directly elect their finance or foreign minister?!
I'm quite aware of how it works thank you.

You're being willfully blind of the democratic deficit of the Commission and the lack of power of the Parliament to effectively hold the Commission to account.
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Erzan
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(Original post by OMGWTFBBQ)
That's lies lies and damned statistics from you I'm afraid. UKIP didn't stand in every ward, and therefore your 92% rejecting UKIP figure is not accurate and many wards were not given the opportunity to support them.

What people forget with "multicultural" areas is that there is a large non-immigrant population that was there before the immigrants settled, and they often aren't best pleased about the resulting strain on services.



I'm quite aware of how it works thank you.

You're being willfully blind of the democratic deficit of the Commission and the lack of power of the Parliament to effectively hold the Commission to account.
Ah was wondering when the lovable UKIP phrases were used. Wake up the hell up, the majority of Liberal democracies suffer from a democratic deficit one way or another. Unless you have some evidence from comparative analysis that the EU system of government is any way worst than others around the world, you will forever look like a typical UKIP.

You probably don't care, because hey most people are ignorant to politics. But the EU is more liberal, decentralised and consensual and than most of the world. Imagine the state of Texas or Scotland being able to block the US congress or UK parliament from taking action on policy areas like home and justice. The EU parliament regularly blocks any legislative proposals of the Commission, do you even follow EU politics? Nothing can get into EU law without the will of Parliament and Council of Ministers. I challenge you to find me evidence it does.
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chrisawhitmore
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I'd also add that turnout at European elections is far lower, and that favours UKIP as one of the parties whose supporters actually care about the EU.
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OMGWTFBBQ
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(Original post by Erzan)
You probably don't care, because hey most people are ignorant to politics. But the EU is more liberal, decentralised and consensual and than most of the world.
Clearly not true.

Theses votes across Europe show that a very large proportion of Europeans do not consent to being ruled by the unaccountable EU.

Also a common external tariff (ie. protectionism) is pretty far from liberal. As is much of the behaviour of the EU in the last 5 years (wealth confiscation, imposition of technocratic Governments in member states without democratic mandate, etc. etc.)

Not to mention that every time the ECJ rules against the Government, that is an unconsented interference in the running of this country (inb4 ECJ, EC & EU are different entities).
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