Question 2: Can we get a Green government without a proportional voting system? How?

Leader candidates

Peter Cranie

By doing what we know works: year-round work wins council seats. We expand our council groups. When we hold enough seats in a constituency we're in a strong position to challenge for the Westminster seat. Meanwhile, winning MEP and Assembly seats raises our profile and shows us as winners. In a time of crisis we might benefit from a major swing as Syriza have in Greece, but in any case it will take coherent strategy and hard work.

Pippa Bartolotti

Not without a major event of biblical proportions.

Romayne Phoenix

Yes. But it won't be easy. Our future success depends on strengthening two strategic pillars in the party:

  • smartly targeted electoral strategy,  and
  • active, issue based campaigning

Both pillars complement each other. Elected under a TTW strategy I know how this works and how we can improve our successes with The West Midlands Strategy. Green government will be out of reach for many decades with Target To Win alone.

We must take responsibility alongside many others to build a mass movement ready to reject current economic and capitalist values. Such a movement could deliver us electoral success. In Greece Syriza went from 4.6% to 16.9% to 27%. They almost won their general election. They succeeded by campaigning alongside the people, by being involved in their struggles.

Natalie Bennett

No. With PR even our c.10% of the vote now could put us in a coalition. We can ensure that within a decade we have MEPs representing every region of England and Wales (and at least six elected in 2014), and councillors in every major city and town, plus plenty of rural areas. But we won't get it by wishing - we need to strategically plan. We can't work harder; we can work smarter. And we can and do win under FPTP.

Deputy Leader candidiates

Caroline Allen

Yes. Organising, building our regions and local parties, sharing good practice, presenting credible policies, increasing media coverage and fundraising. Seizing the opportunity; people are realising the other parties don't represent their interests, that the current system is fundamentally broken; we must be ready to step up with a positive alternative that talks to people about how we will make their lives better.

Richard Mallender

Short of some terrible environmental disaster just before a general election that persuaded well over half the electorate to vote for us, no.

If we get to the point of having, say, 20 Green MPs then I think it very likely that the political makeup of the Commons would be so changed that there would in any case be a move for a change to a PR system well ahead of the prospect of a Green government.

Will Duckworth

Yes, but it won't be easy. As we have seen in Target to Win campaigns there is a critical point at which large numbers of voters realise that the straight talking sense that we espouse is not only desirable but also electable. We have to fight with groups such as Coalition of Resistance and Friends of the Earth as well as working hard on the electoral front to bring about that tipping point.

Alexandra Phillips

Yes, within my lifetime this will be possible, but we can't underestimate the difficulty. Our success in Brighton Pavilion (in which I played a central part) gives hope and we need to remember that 31% can be enough to win seats. Targeting strategically, identifying the right demographics needed to win and broadening our base will be essential. Putting in place the tools to succeed, such as fundraising and membership growth plans and nurturing diversity in activists are also crucial.


Question 3