Labour and Green voters across the UK are making unofficial pacts to vote swap to make their votes count in an attempt to topple the Conservatives.
The UK’s first-past-the-post (FPTP) system was designed to create strong governments without the need for coalitions, and as such favour the two major parties to the detriment of all others.
Across the UK, the rise of UKIP, Greens, SNP, and Plaid Cymru in the polls demonstrate that voters have become increasingly disillusioned with both the Tories and Labour, however traditionally these polls have failed to equate into votes on election day as people have tended to vote for the “best bad option” rather than with their hearts.
In general, voters on the left would prefer a Labour than the Tories in power, and with the FPTP system meaning that the choice was only really between the two, then they would vote Labour even though in their hearts they wanted to vote Green, SNP, Plaid Cymru, or Liberal Democrat.
Now, by virtue of informal vote swapping and with the help of websites like VoteSwap, voters on the left are looking to both topple the Tories and give a vote to their preferred party.
Green voters in constituencies where it is a two-horse race between Labour and the Tories can swap their vote with Labour voters in other areas, so Labour gets the vote in a marginal seat to oust a Tory candidate, but the size of the Green vote on a national level remains unaffected, giving the Greens a better platform in the future.
Vote swapping has gone on for years on an unofficial basis, where friends and acquaintances would exchange their votes, and had a personal trust that the other party would uphold their side of the deal, but can you trust an anonymous person on the internet to do the same?