Let the post-mortems begin. Because we need to know how to do much better next time. The next referendum – on PR – may be as little as 5 years away… And we should be pressing immediately for PR for the upper house, which would be a historic accomplishment.
Let’s get some obvious and crucial points out of the way first:
- Clegg was of course an albatross around the Yes side’s neck.
- The right-wing-press decided that it wasn’t going to tolerate AV, and that made a huge impact.
- The No side had more money (it hasn’t declared how much more – that’s exactly how we know that it had more, because otherwise it would certainly have declared otherwise), and money buys votes in a ‘democracy’.
- The plain lies of the No campaign and of senior Tories, and the strategy of ‘Confuse the voters as much as possible’, seem to have paid off.
- The official Electoral Commission document that everyone received didn’t help.