Wow. No to AV came so close to stating an actual true fact this week. It only would have taken a few more words. Sadly for them, lies are what result when you run a campaign based on soundbites over substance. So on with the series!
While it would be true to say that AV is only used to elect governments in Papua New Guinea, Fiji and Australia; it is not true to claim outright that those are the only places it’s used. In the British House of Commons AV is used to elect the speaker and the chairs of select committees. Every major British political party uses AV (or a system very similar to AV) to elect their leader. Local parties use AV to select candidates for election. In the US, as I mentioned last time, at least one city has chosen to adopt it every year since 2004.
Outside of government, AV is used all over the world by charities, unions and community organisations who want to ensure that every member has a say in their leadership elections. It’s used at the Oscars to decide who will get the award for best picture, because they recognise that it
best allows the collective judgment of all voting members to be most accurately represented. My own passion for electoral reform developed when I was forced to learn different electoral systems as returning officer for elections at the University of Bradford Union.
In short, everywhere voters get a say in the system they use, they choose AV or something similar.