Could this happen here?

Ophængning af valgplakater
Originally uploaded by Manu Sareen

Imagine this: It’s election day on a dark, cold, windy day in November. The polling stations are only open from 9am to 8pm, yet 87% of voters cast their vote. A woman in labour gets the ambulance to stop at the polling station so that she can vote before giving birth. Afterwards, the votes are counted, and the final results are announced around three hours after the election ended. Naturally, from 8pm to midnight the election completely dominates the programming on all the main TV channels.

This is not a fantasy of mine, this is what actually happened in Denmark yesterday.

Why aren’t elections like that in Scotland? Is it because people got disillusioned during the Thatcher years? Is it because the electoral system for Westminster leads to many wasted votes and unattractive political parties? Or is it just a cultural difference?


  1. after a decade of tories and a decade of labour and not much difference and no chance anyone else’ll get in – it is hard enough to drag yourself out between 7am and 10pm on a scorching May day! And when in labour, I can really think of better places to go in an ambulance

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