Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Whatever Your Choice, Choose to Vote

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Whatever Your Choice, Choose to Vote

Article excerpt

BEFORE the polls close at 10pm tonight, all those who have not yet voted in today's General Election should think very hard about whether they can justify a decision not to take part. This could be an election in which the alarming collapse in turnout seen in 2001 - from 72 per cent in 1997 to just 59 per cent - might be repeated. But it is an illusion to think that abstaining somehow acts as a restraining influence on the government formed; it is more likely to breed arrogance among those in power. Of course, the voting system we have is far from perfect. The odds are stacked against any change of government. Population changes and the redrawing of constituency boundaries mean Labour needs relatively few votes to win large numbers of seats in its northern heartlands; the Tories need proportionately far more votes in the rural and suburban south.

Our electoral survey today suggests that Labour enjoys a five-point lead - which would translate into a 110-seat majority. …

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