Evaluate the Factors That Influenced the Result of the 2010 Uk General Election.

3736 Words Jan 12th, 2013 15 Pages
Evaluate the factors that influenced the result of the 2010 UK general Election.

For the purpose of this essay, I will be evaluating the factors that influenced the result of the 2010 UK general election. The general election was held on Thursday 6th May 2010 and was the first election since 1974 to result in a hung parliament, as no party achieved the 326 seats needed to for an overall majority.
The three main parties were the Conservatives, whose party leader was and still is David Cameron, Labour, whose party leader was Gordon Brown and the Liberal Democrats, whose party leader was and still is Nick Clegg. The party with the highest share of seats were the Conservatives, who achieved 307 seats out of a possible 650. The party with
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Research by Whiteley and Seyd (2002) backs up this claim as they note that the decline in party membership and party activism has been documented by grass-roots party members in the UK for over ten years. Whiteley (2006) further supports this claim as he notes that there has been a weakening of partisan attachments within the electorate, and that over time there has been a long term decline towards party identification. He goes on to note that in 1964, when surveys first started to be used, almost 50% of the electorate had strong party identification towards a particular political party, but by 2001 this had reduced to only 13% of the electorate. He concluded by saying that although party identification had clearly declined over the years, the majority of voters still have some form of partisan attachments, although clearly a lot weaker than it once was. Meaning voters can now be more easily persuaded to switch parties. Research by Budge, Newton, McKay and Bartle (1998) also show that there has been a decline in party identification. They state that between the years 1945 to 1970, 44.8% of the electorate described themselves as being Conservative, 46.8% as Labour, 7.1% as Liberal Democrats and only 1.3% identified themselves as having attachments with other smaller parties. However, in 2005 Conservative
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