The 2015 UK Election Explained

The 2015 UK Election Explained

on Thursday the 7th of May 2015 there will be a general election in the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland which will shape the country's foreign and domestic policies for the next five years this video will briefly explain how the UK electoral system works which direction each party wants to take the country what a breakdown of their policies looks like and why you should vote even if you feel disillusioned with government the idea here is to clearly explain what the goals and policies of each party are so that people living in Britain can cast a more informed vote and the rest of the world can better know the sometimes incomprehensible British political system how the UK system works the United Kingdom is a constitutional monarchy without an actual written constitution which uses a parliamentary system of governance consisting of an upper house the House of Lords and a lower house the House of Commons only the lower house is presently democratically elected with members of the upper house being appointed by the reigning monarch in recent years there have been some major changes to this system which includes the requirement for members of the House of Lords to earn rather than inherit their seat the establishment of a Supreme Court in 2009 and the introduction of fixed election dates from 2015 onwards previously it was the House of Lords which performed the functions of the new Supreme Court elections could be called at any time if the governing Prime Minister felt it was politically judicious to do so and the then burgeoning 1,300 member House of Lords could pass down seats and titles amongst themselves in what amounted to an unelected aristocracy other proposed restructuring such as the replacement of the current majoritarian system with a preferential voting system and also a proposal for the total independence of Scotland both failed by referendum in 2011 and 2014 respectively so how does a general election work the United Kingdom is presently divided into 650 constituencies across four countries and a tidy mess of political parties a mess because there are so many including a few joke parties but tidy and so much as the largest three of these tends to comprise upwards of 95% of parliament during a general election each of these 650 constituencies elects one representative to Parliament from a list of local candidates not every party is able to feel the candidate in each constituency so depending on where you live some parties might not even appear on the ballot the Scottish National Party for example doesn't have any candidates outside of Scotland there's no actual rule preventing them from doing this and the Christian people's Alliance are only standing in 17 seats each elected representative from these 650 constituencies then becomes one of the 650 members of parliament that makes up the House of Commons but this value is not fixed and constituency boundaries are frequently redrawn between elections as a result of the 2010 election the current parliament is structured as follows with 302 conservative 256 Labour 56 Liberal Democrats 6 members of the Scottish National Party 3 from plied company 2 from you Kip and just one green with the remaining 24 from various parties across the UK per country the MPs are approximately proportional to population with 533 from England 40 from Wales 59 from Scotland and 18 from Northern Ireland so then who becomes the prime minister the reigning monarch actually picks the prime minister who is usually but not necessarily the leader of the party with the majority of elected candidates this has two very important ramifications first during a general election voters are not directly electing a prime minister and because the party leader must be a member of the House of Commons thus be elected in their own right it's even possible that the leader of the party which wins the general election can lose their seat second the Prime Minister can change at any time without another general election either by resignation party revolt or dismissal by the reigning monarch this is why it's so very important to vote for a party's policies and not its leader so let's take a look based on my 2015 manifestos or what these party policies are starting with the economy and what each party's proposals are for taxes childcare benefits jobs and housing each of which have been structured around reducing the national debt and deficit what are the national debt and deficit there are three key concepts here the national debt is the amount of money that the UK owes to investors the deficit or sometimes surplus is the difference between the UK's expenditure and its revenue thus the amount by which the debt is growing each year and the interest is the yearly cost of borrowing to the UK economy interest is affected by debt and debt is a function of deficit so manifesto promises to balance the books our party proposals for creating a budget surplus in order to reduce the national debt and so reduce the yearly cost to the UK economy the national debt represented here is a function of nominal GDP you the increases from high spending during Wars and financial crises and lowers during longer periods of recovery the UK had a surplus every year from 1947 to 1974 shown here by Office for National Statistics data and is currently in deficit with a steadily increasing debt but a fluctuating cost to the economy at 2.5% of GDP or forty five point seven billion pounds per year as of 2015 most parties want to cut the deficit whilst simultaneously investing in education health care and infrastructure so let's see what they propose starting with taxes as it currently stands everything small earns up to ten thousand six hundred pounds known as the personal allowance is free of income tax after which taxes are set at 20 percent of everything earn up to forty two thousand pounds which is known as the 20p tax rate as in 20 P on each pound then it's 40 percent on the income earned after this up to one hundred and fifty thousand pounds and forty-five percent on any earnings after that in addition people contribute twelve percent of their eight to forty two thousand pound yearly income to national insurance and two percent after that so for the following wages this is what you currently pay in tax so how are the different parties proposing to change this the Conservatives want to increase the untaxed personal allowance to twelve thousand five hundred pounds and increase the threshold for the forty P tax rate to fifty thousand pounds thus reducing taxes for all the Greens would like to see a higher tax rate on the wealthiest increasing the top tier two sixty P in addition to removing the two percent cap on national insurance contributions for people earning above forty two thousand pounds these increases are designed to try and reduce the disparity between high and low earners to a ratio of ten to one labour wants to increase the top tier rates of fifty P and somehow reinstated Tempe tax but they have not released any further details and so we're left guessing they probably intend to reduce taxes on low earners and increase them on very high earners the Liberal Democrats like the Conservatives would also like to increase the personal allowance to twelve thousand five hundred pounds but they're not proposing any significant changes to the taxation of the more wealthy polite company supports the fifty P tax rate and much like the Greens also proposes to reform national insurance contributions they want to raise the contribution threshold from 8,000 to 10,000 six hundred and raise the two percent cap to one hundred thousand pounds this results in substantial tax cuts for low earners and high contributions to Social Security from the wealthy the Scottish National Party backs at twenty percent increase to the personal allowance bringing it to twelve thousand seven hundred and twenty pounds in addition to the fifty p tax on higher earnings the result is modest tax increases on the wealthiest and substantial cuts for lower earners and finally the UK Independence Party is proposing to raise the personal allowance to thirteen thousand five hundred pounds and the introduction of a thirty five P tax rate starting at forty three thousand five hundred pounds which would push up the forty P threshold to fifty five thousand pounds this results in tax cuts for all with substantial cuts for lower earners other tax policies proposed by these parties are approximately in line with these philosophies next let's take a look at child care the Conservatives would provide thirty hours of free child care three and four-year-olds with working parents the Greens plan a system overhaul with the introduction of a free and universal child care and education service available for all children aged five and under labor guarantee twenty five hours of free child care for three and four-year-olds and that primary school care will be available from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. the Liberal Democrats aim to provide 20 hours a week of free childcare for all two to four year olds and introduce tax-free childcare for other ages polite company would improve the availability of childcare for children with disabilities and aim to provide flexible and affordable childcare in Wales the Scottish National Party supports 30 hours a week of free childcare for three and four-year-olds along with the provision of childcare for the most deprived two-year-olds and finally the UK Independence Party would retain the current 15 hours a week of free childcare for three and four-year-olds extended to two year-olds whose parents are on certain benefits but initiate a full review of the current system as they feel it is unsatisfactory on the topic of benefit and welfare there's a swirling vortex of proposals that aren't easily categorized reduce the maximum household benefits to twenty three thousand pounds a year is what's being proposed by the Conservatives with you keep saying it will support a lower cap on benefits labour will keep the household benefit cap and ask the Social Security Advisory Committee to examine if it should be lower in some areas on the other side of the spectrum the Greens would remove the cap on benefits freeze benefits for working aged people for two years is also on the table for the Conservatives while a 1% cap on increases to working age benefits until the budget is balanced is being proposed by the Liberal Democrats and plied company plans to oppose cuts to in benefits labour is proposing to cap child benefit rises for the next two years while UK would limit child benefits to two children and also stop child benefits for children who live abroad repeal the bedroom tax which was introduced by the coalition government and reduces housing benefits for those with vacant rooms is proposed by the Greens labour plaid comer II the Scottish National Party and the UK Independence Party while the Liberal Democrats would rather reform the bedroom tax to make it only apply to those who both don't need the extra room and have been offered an alternative the Liberal Democrats would also introduce a yellow card system for incorrect benefit claims as opposed to direct sanctions the Greens would end work for benefits programs and ensure that work and voluntary training opportunities are available and instead the Conservative and labor plan is to replace job seekers allowance for 18 to 21 year-olds by a youth allowance for the Conservatives this would be time limited to 6 months after which young people will have to take an apprenticeship a traineeship or do daily Community Work for their benefits for labour it would be dependent on recipients being in training and targeted at those who need it most the Conservatives would also stop automatic entitlement to Housing Benefit for 18 to 21 year olds the Greens would set up a living rent commission to explore controls on rental prices protection of state pensions with guaranteed yearly increases is being proposed by the Conservatives labour the Liberal Democrats and the Scottish National Party whilst applied company says it will ensure living pension for all though Labour is proposing to remove winter fuel allowance for wealthy pensioners and the Liberal Democrats want to remove winter fuel allowance and free TV licences for pensioners on the 40 P income tax rate and what about jobs to reduce the number of people requiring benefits the Conservatives are planning to create 3 million new apprenticeships the Greens have an ambitious plan to increase the minimum wage to 10 pounds per hour labour wants to increase the minimum wage to 8 pounds per hour in addition to providing a starter job for young people who've been unemployed for more than a year which they will have to take or lose benefits labour also plans to guarantee an apprenticeship for every school leaver who attains the grades the Liberal Democrats say they would double the number of businesses hiring apprentices they'd also ask the low pay Commission to look at ways to increase the minimum wage and encourage the use of a living wage plied company wants to continue promoting apprenticeships whilst increasing the minimum wage to a living wage the Scottish National Party would support measures to extend the living wage and increase the minimum wage to 8 pounds 70 per hour they also promised to deliver 30,000 new apprenticeships each year in Scotland and you Kip wants to introduce apprenticeships at a younger age partially replacing GCSEs for some students in addition all parties have proposed measures to ban zero-hours contracts when it comes to housing there's a lot of numbers being thrown around one party even claims in its manifestos immigration section that to meet demand we must build one home every 7 minutes which misleadingly makes this goal sound unattainable but a house every 7 minutes is just 75,000 homes a year so keeping that in mind how many new houses are each party planning to build during their time in office first of all plied company doesn't seem to have a specific target the Conservatives are planning to build 200,000 starter homes with a 20% discount for first-time buyers under the age of 40 200,000 over five years is 40,000 per year the UK Independence Party aims to build 1 million new homes on brownfield sites by 2025 1 million over this 10-year period is 100,000 per year the Greens aim to build 500,000 social rented homes by 2020 500,000 over five years is 100,000 per year the Scottish National Party supports a target for 100,000 new affordable houses per year labour wants to reach the target of building 200,000 homes per year by 2020 and the Liberal Democrats top that by aiming for 300,000 homes per year though it's worth noting here that's calling to the Confederation of British industry the peak build rate attained in the last five years was only 219 thousand per year so this value might be a little optimistic the National Health Service first of all a little context a five-year plan report was recently released by the boss of the NHS detailing that there would be a 30 billion pounds per year shortfall in funding by the end of the next Parliament but that he believes 22 billion pounds per year can be achieved in savings leaving a requirement for 8 billion pounds per year in additional government funding above inflation for NHS England also relevant here are Private Finance Initiative contracts which are a way for the NHS to get private investment underwritten by public funds in order to expand its services without the need for immediate public funding this was first introduced by labor that has been criticized mainly for allowing debt to be placed off the balance sheet thus not appearing on the government's finances it has also been branded as privatisation of the NHS by some as it is in effect a public-private partnership and finally the Health and Social Care Act which was passed in 2012 and opposed by the British Medical Association extensively restructures NHS England and prompted renewed concerns over privatization a 2015 review of the Health and Social Care Act found that the top-down reorganisation has been hugely damaging to the NHS but that claims of mass privatization are exaggerated so what are the different parties proposing to go forward the Conservatives will fund the 8 billion pound shortfall predicted by the five-year plan report they also plan to make it possible to see a GP seven days a week and want Britain to lead the world when it comes to fighting cancer and dementia the Greens have a plan to immediately increase NHS funding by 12 billion pounds per year growing to 20 billion pounds per year by 2020 this would provide free dentistry and free prescriptions in England they would counter privatisation of the NHS by scrapping the Health and Social Care Act and any further PFI contracts they would also promote local community health centres for rapid access to health care and would have an emphasis on mental health labour plans to commit to spending an additional 2.5 billion per year on the NHS they will aim for GP appointments under 48 hours and for cancer tests to be processed within one week they will also counter privatisation of the NHS by scrapping the Health and Social Care Act in favor of a preferred supplier system with a cap on allowed profits the Liberal Democrats will also match the 8 billion pound shortfall predicted by the report they will expand evening and weekend opening hours for GPS and aim to provide therapy in under 18 weeks for conditions such as depression the Liberal Democrats want Britain to leave the world in mental health research flight company will vote against any further privatisation of the NHS and will support moves to restore to a fully public service whilst recruiting an extra 1,000 doctors in Wales they will also support campaigns for public and mental health awareness the Scottish National Party plans to match the 8 billion pound shortfall predicted by the report two billion pounds of which are a.m. art for NHS Scotland they also plan to vote against further privatization of NHS England and will support news to restore it to a fully public service the UK Independence Party plans to commit an extra three billion pounds per year to the NHS and will stop further uses of PFI contracts they will also have a focus on mental health and dementia all parties plan to integrate health care and social care in order to focus on prevention and better care conditions education is hugely important to the future of the United Kingdom and each party has their own plan to improve the system the following points cover the system in England as there are variations in Wales Scotland and Northern Ireland but the basic principles are the same currently in England children are first prepared for SATs these are standardized assessment tests which aim to provide a benchmark for children's progress relative to pupils of the same age across the country students have to take these at ages 6 10 and 13 they will then move on to a general certificate of education typically to be taken by age 16 after which compulsory education ends in a student may pursue an apprenticeship or advanced levels followed by University there are also many different types of schools in England including private schools community schools grammar schools academies and free schools name a few private schools don't need to follow the National Curriculum but account for a minority of students community schools are administered by local councils grammar schools can pick students based on ability academies are a Labour initiative to reform underperforming schools by being directly administered by the government and free schools are a coalition initiative which extends the academies programme to allow parents teachers and organizations to set up their own schools so what will each party do with this system the Conservatives plan to invest 7 billion pounds in schools over the next 5 years they want to turn every underperforming school into an Academy and deliver free schools where they wanted they also want to put an emphasis on mathematics engineering science and computing skills whilst having no cap on university places the Greens would have a free Universal early education program as explained in childcare and would oppose free schools and academies they plan to abolish SATs and league tables end the marketization and outsourcing of Education and limit class sizes to 20 while stall so restoring the education Maintenance Allowance for 16 and 17-year olds they would also have compulsory age-appropriate sex education for all schools and change the university landscape by reintroducing block grants for universities and scrapping tuition fees along with currently owed student loans labour will protect the education budget so that it rises with inflation they will also limit class sizes to thirty four five to seven-year-olds and have a technical baccalaureate for sixteen to eighteen year olds they plan to end the coalition's free Schools program and drop university fees to six thousand pounds per year labour will introduce conditions for private schools receiving states subsidy that's ensuring they contribute to state education as well as private finally like the Greens they will implement compulsory age-appropriate sex education in all schools the Liberal Democrats will also protect the education budget and implement compulsory age-appropriate sex education in all schools they have a plan to have a core curriculum set by an independent body and review higher education finance in order to consider any necessary reforms and ensure equality of access they'll also aim to direct more money towards disadvantaged school children in early learning settings and are planning to offer a two-thirds discount on local bus fares there's 16 to 21 year olds to help with the cost of commuting Clyde company wants to provide an additional year of schooling for three to four year olds they plan to set learning outcomes that give freedom to schools on how they achieve these goals they want to emphasize foreign languages by having a compulsory GCSE and introducing language in primary school they'll also continue to oppose the free school system implemented in England and plan to provide subsidies for Welsh University student studying in Wales the Scottish National Party plans to maintain free university tuition in Scotland and continue to charge tuition to students from England Wales in Northern Ireland though they support a reduction in fees across the UK they also plan to extend the availability of the education Maintenance Allowance and continue to build and refurbish schools the UK Independence Party would end performance-related pay for teachers and stop stage 1 SATs for children aged 6 to 7 in order to discourage teaching to the test you Kipp supports age-appropriate sex education but is quite clear that this would not apply to primary school children finally they would promote sciences technology mathematics and engineering by scrapping student loans for those students after they have worked five years in a related job and would allow University is to charge international student fees to students from the European Union Europe the European Union is a political and economic union of 28 countries which represents 7.3 percent of the world's population at five hundred million people and 20 percent of global GDP at sixteen point six trillion dollars per year it was created in 1958 as a federal solution to the kind of extremist nationalism that brought the devastation of the Second World War and was built upon a prior union of European industries since the 1992 Maastricht Treaty we are all European citizens and can vote in European elections we also have the right to live work and contribute to the economies of any member state we choose to the general idea today is that it becomes economically more favorable to buy and sell within the EU market and so the Member States develop each other's economies rather than solely exporting growth to our nations regarding the EU this is what the various parties are offering labour and the Scottish National Party appears satisfied with the current system and wish to maintain the UK's position in the EU the Green Party Liberal Democrats and plaid Cumbria are all resolutely Pro Europe but do also want some reforms Clyde company wants to discuss how the EU will evolve going forward the Liberal Democrats take this one step further by proposing a referendum in the event of a quote Marshall transfer of sovereignty end quote and the Greens actively support a national referendum on EU membership as they believe many things have changed since joining the Conservatives are proposing a future referendum on membership but only after attempts to reform the current system finally the UK Independence Party wants out and would hold the referendum as soon as possible so who is voting in this election about 81 percent of the UK's population is eligible to vote and only about 85 percent of those people are registered to do so this 85 percent of 81 percent is therefore the maximum turnout and the 100 percent baseline by which voter turnout is measured this is how the eligible voters are distributed between each country and this is how many registered voters participate in elections in the 2010 election only 65 percent of registered voters which is 55 percent of those eligible actually voted which is crazy to put this into context the Conservatives were elected in 2010 with 10 point 7 million votes which is 36.1 percent of the ballots cast or just twenty four point two percent of registered voters meaning that the remaining 35 percent of registered but non participate revote –is could genuinely swing an election were they not so apathetic so vote and do so based on policy not personality thanks for watching

48 thoughts on “The 2015 UK Election Explained

  1. fucking hell has the green -party captured a leprican or something??? wheres all this money gonna come from ?

  2. There's nothing that says the pm has to be an mp, it is just convention like much of the role of prime minister

  3. Whatever it is it still represents a system that is rigged and does not care less about what it perceives as the : "" commoners "? Narcissistic at best? A stupid archaic system that exists within a bubble, of which, is unapproachable and out of touch! Class = ego – ego = status – status = stupidity!

    Need I say anymore??

  4. 15:33 Britain… why are none of your parties sellouts to the health insurance corporations? It's not fair! The Republicans and the Conservative Democrats are entirely against everything those parties want, the Republicans even are against Obamacare, which is a band-aid and ointment over a gushing wound. None of your parties seems to want privatization. Both of ours would laugh all of this off, instead giving billions to the military budget…

  5. national debt is what the UK (government) owes to investors. The UK – including citizens, corporations and banks, owe far more than the national debt. In fact, the UK's national debt is dwarfed by the UK's private sector debts. Something commentators and politicians were still not discussing in 2015, as they had failed to do prior to the Financial Crisis of 2007-9. IT was the latter which caused the crisis in both the UK and the US

  6. From an American: So basically your Green Party are the equivalent of Bernie Sanders voters. How the fuck do they plan to pay for all that shit?

  7. "UK issuing Dubai sukuk is like Puerto Rico without official paper work. you say they took the holy Land of the Jews and gave it to the Jews only for you to get the UK now? yani… Aube hustlin"

  8. As a American, it sounds like I would be a Liberal Democrat but I also might of not really understood this.

  9. 5:30 That's odd. I earned less than £6,000 a couple of years back and yet I still had to pay tax and national insurance.

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    Invest money and gain 10% interest monthly IGOFX. We are investing in FOREX market under well experience fund managers. This is called as copy treading

  11. 2:30– right, ok… i get that England should have the most constituencies as they are the largest country, but they literally have hundreds more than the rest! Is this is to make sure no non-english party gets a majority? or is there some other reason? If you know please tell me.

  12. I'm an American, so my perspective may be greatly different, but I was shocked by the limited information on military, immigration, and non-European Foreign Policy. Are these not important issues to UK citizens?

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