Wednesday, January 06, 2010

An Unelected PM?

BBC politics blogger Nick Robinson is babbling on about the prospect of Gordon Brown being replaced by an unelected leader. Now, I'm only a theorist of democracy, and not an expert on the British electoral system, but it seems to me that this is always the case. For all the talk of Blair's 'presidential' style, we don't (yet) elect the PM the way that Americans elect their President.

It seems that a couple of commentators get things right. Firstly, assuming Brown were to be replaced by an MP, then that person would have been elected by his or her constituency (just like Blair, Brown, Cameron and any other MP). Secondly, what we - the public at large - do is simply choose our local representatives. The party with the most of these, in the aggregate, get to form a government, and they get to choose their leader/Prime Minister.

We may not have elected Brown PM, but there's no straightforward sense in which we elected Blair PM in 1997 either...

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