UKIP's Manifesto‎ > ‎

Real Democracy

UKIP’s fundamental belief in radical democracy marks us out from the other parties. We want real devolution, with an English Parliament. We will abolish the House of Lords, hold binding referenda on the issues that matter most to people, and introduce a fairer voting system.
The fabric of the historic Palace of Westminster is in desperate need of restoration, but  perhaps it is not just the building itself that is falling apart. Are the decaying walls symptomatic of what is happening inside the mother of parliaments?
Government has become bloated and unmanageable. Politics is corrupted by  self-interest and big business. An unaccountable elite revels in mutual back-scratching and cronyism. If the best interests of the people of this country are to be well served, our current political system needs urgent reform. 
UKIP believes it is time to make our nation truly democratic, and this is how we will do it.
PROPORTIONAL REPRESENTATION All votes should matter, so we will introduce a voting system that genuinely reflects the will of  the people as a whole. In the 2015 general election, UKIP got 12.6 per cent of the vote but  only one seat, while the SNP won just 4.7 percent of the national vote but took 56 seats. The current First Past the Post (FPTP) system we use for electing MPs to our national parliament is bad for voters, bad for government, and bad for democracy.
UKIP wants a fairer, more proportional voting system that makes seats match votes, and ends the inbuilt advantage the establishment parties have over smaller parties. A proportional electoral system that delivers a parliament representative of the number of votes cast, while retaining a constituency link, is one we strongly advocate. 
There is a growing disconnect between people and politicians. People feel their voice isn’t heard, and that their vote doesn’t change anything. UKIP stands for a fundamentally different kind of politics that puts power back in the hands of the British people. Leaving the European Union is the first step on that road.
SCRAP POSTAL VOTING  ON DEMAND Originally intended to increase voter turnout and enhance democracy, postal voting has had the opposite effect, fuelling “massive, systematic and organised fraud” that would “disgrace a banana republic,” according to England and Wales’s senior and most experienced Election Commissioner. UKIP will reserve postal votes only for those who can show a genuine need. Otherwise, voting must be done at polling stations. 
ABOLISH THE  HOUSE OF LORDS It is time for the House of Lords to go. Attempts at reform have proved counterproductive. The House of Lords Act 1999 replaced the majority of hereditary peers with appointees, which only increased the Prime Minister’s ability to put cronies into  the upper chamber. The  House of Lords is now stuffed with party donors and fundraisers, ex-MPs, and favoured former employees. 
Stuffed is the right word: the House of Lords is the second biggest legislature in the world, after the Chinese National People’s Congress. The average cost of each peer is £115,000 per year. 
A FAIR DEAL FOR  ALL FOUR NATIONS The public widely regards the United Kingdom’s current devolutionary system as fundamentally unfair, particularly to the English. UKIP will put England, Scotland, 
Wales and Northern Ireland on the same footing by instituting a new English Parliament. It will sit in the chamber vacated by the House of Lords, have its own First Minister, and its 375 members will be elected under the Additional Member system of proportional representation, one or more from each traditional county or large city and 125  top-up seats.
All four nations will have broadly similar devolved powers and none will have power over matters affecting the whole of the UK, such as foreign policy, defence of the realm, or constitutional matters.
A SMALLER HOUSE OF COMMONS  Our national parliament will be given two primary areas of responsibility: to act as an oversight body for the regional Parliaments and Assemblies, and to deal with all matters not devolved to them. The size of the House of Commons will be halved to 325 directly elected members from across the four nations of the United Kingdom, according to a system of proportional representation. 
These changes will reduce the number of politicians eligible to sit in the legislature from 1475 to 700, a net reduction of 775. 
THE CITIZEN’S INITIATIVE If 10,000 people sign an approved parliamentary petition, the government must respond. If over 100,000 people sign it, the petition must be debated in parliament. However, this is not real democracy. Responses to petitions are often cursory, sometimes derisory, and debates rarely take place in the House of Commons chamber, so are usually badly attended and easily dismissed. 
We will pass legislation allowing citizens to influence our legislature directly, by giving them the power to initiate binding referenda on the issues of most importance to them. Every two years, a national referendum will be held on the issues gaining the highest numbers of signatures on approved petitions. The  outcome of these referenda would be  legally binding and included in the  Queen’s Speech. 
UKIP will lead the way in saving the Union and ending friction in the current devolution settlement. Our policies will end the need for tactical voting, which undermines democracy and freedom of political choice, cut the cost and size of government, and give people a real say in how they are governed. 
UKIP is the real party for the people