Burnham has said:
"It would be a recipe for chaos and confusion if Labour candidates were also supporting AV in their literature."
Yet Pack points out that there was no chaos or confusion across London when a referendum called by a Labour government on the same day as other elections.
On the subject of the Alternative Vote and Labour's stance Will Straw on Left Foot Forward is calling for Labour to campaign for the Yes vote. He gives two reasons for this:
Firstly it belies the spirit of Labour’s existing policy at a time when the party is (rightly) criticising others for veering from their previous objectives. Labour’s manifesto said:
"To ensure that every MP is supported by the majority of their constituents voting at each election, we will hold a referendum on introducing the Alternative Vote for elections to the House of Commons."
Also Ed Miliband during his successful leadership bid said "I support AV for the House of Commons and will campaign for it."
Other reasons, he rules out the chaos, confusion and cost element, quite correctly a line of support on literature is not that difficult.
The opposition from Labour in the commons appears to be nothing more than political sour grapes for finding themselves on the opposite side of the House. It is time to put aside political sniping and get on with the serious business of getting a fairer voting system.
I look forward to working with the Labour Party in Northern Ireland on getting further votes for Westminster and everyone who believes in this step.
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