In the run-up to the election some experts were predicting that this could be one of the least “proportional” polls ever, meaning that the proportion of parliamentary seats a party wins won’t accurately reflect the proportion of votes cast.

FactCheck has been pointing out for some time that Ukip and the Greens were unlikely to see their growing support translate into a significant number of seats, thanks to the quirks of the First Past the Post system, but the mismatch might surprise many voters.

Winning Ukip candidate Douglas Carswell said: “Across the country about 5 million people will have either voted for Ukip or for the Green Party. Those 5 million people will be lucky to get a tiny handful of MPs in the House of Commons.

“That failure to translate those 5 million votes into seats is less a reflection of how my party or the Green Party campaigned, rather it tells us how dysfunctional our political system is.”

What would parliament look like under proportional representation (PR)?


We used the numbers of votes cast as counted by the BBC at time of writing, which is predicted to give the Conservatives a small absolute majority.

Then we fed the numbers into a calculator based on the d’Hondt method of counting votes, the variant of PR used to elect UK MEPs to the European Parliament.

This type of PR is widely used in parliamentary elections across Europe and elsewhere, though there are many other systems, like the Alternative Vote model rejected by British voters in the 2011 referendum.

The Tories still have the most seats but their lead would be slashed dramatically.

The Lib Dems would avoid being wiped out and the SNP would get fewer seats. Ukip, having the third highest number of votes, become the third biggest party.

The greens become a significant parliamentary force.

 

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