It’s a victory for AV... but only in Islington
PUBLISHED: 17:08 10 May 2011 | UPDATED: 17:08 10 May 2011
ISLINGTON residents voted in favour of AV in Thursday’s referendum – one of only six London boroughs to do so and one of 10 areas nationwide.
Fifty-seven per cent of the 48,575 votes cast were in favour of the new system, with 43 per cent against. Voter turnout was 35.8 per cent.
Nationally, 68 per cent of people voted no, with just 32 per cent in favour.
Councillor Terry Stacy, leader of the Liberal Democrat group in Islington, said: “I am slightly disappointed with the national results but I am delighted that once again Islington people have shown that they are at the progressive end of the political spectrum. It is just a shame that our two Labour MPs didn’t take notice of that. To back that up, turkeys don’t vote for Christmas, which is perhaps why they voted against.”
Emily Thornberry, Labour MP for Islington South and Finsbury, is a patron of the no to AV campaign. She said: “The thing to bear in mind is that 80 per cent of people in Islington either voted no or didn’t care. There are more important issues in people’s lives at the moment with the cuts and changing the electoral system iwas just an unneccesary distraction.
“The best the yes campaign could manage was 20 per cent of the vote in Islington.”
Other areas to back the system were Hackney, Lambeth, Southwark, Camden, Haringey, Oxford, Cambridge, Glasgow Kelvin and Edinburgh Central.