One in three Brits ‘held their nose’ and voted for the least-worst party in the December election, new research has shown.
A study by the Electoral Reform Society (ERS) found that 32 per cent of voters plumped for a tactical vote rather than picking their preferred party or candidate.
The YouGov research revealed that tactical voting was slightly higher among those who picked Labour or the Liberal Democrats – at 36 per cent and 39 per cent respectively – compared to Tory voters.
Remain voters were also more likely to say they opted for the “best-positioned party/candidate to keep out another party/candidate that I dislike”, with 35 per cent of anti-Brexit voters saying they had done so compared to 29 per cent of Leave voters who said the same.
Similar analysis ahead of the 2017 election suggested only 20 per cent planned to vote tactically.
The report’s authors said the findings make a clear case for a shake-up of the UK’s electoral system.
“One of the most striking features of the 2019 election campaign was the focus on electoral pacts between parties and tactical voting,” they said.
“That these issues were key talking points reflects the dysfunctional nature of Westminster’s electoral system. Under proportional systems, tactical voting is far less of an issue: what you vote for is what you get.”