Anyone who was at the UK Politics Update conference this morning (or anyone else for that matter) is welcome to download this set of slides (.ppt, 333k) used at the conference. Its contents won't be much of a shock to anyone visiting this site regularly - but it contains one or two graphs that teachers and others should feel free to use with their students.6 February 2008.
All of this stuff about rebellions is all very interesting, of course. But do the voters take any notice? This paper (pdf, 208k) which two of us are presenting at the weekend, shows that the answer is almost certainly no. Analysis of the results from the last election reveals almost no electoral consequences based on the way MPs voted at Westminster. Rebels and loyalists alike suffered negative electoral swings, with there being very little evidence that any voters took any notice whatsoever of how the MPs had voted. The one exception is student top-up fees - but even here the benefit is less than one percentage point, and we estimate that just six MPs had their electoral fortunes affected one way or the other by it.
We'd also draw your attention to a very interesting paper in the Canadian Journal of Political Science which looks at the difference between British Labour MPs and Canadian Liberal MPs. Unfortunately you'll require a sub to the CJPS or have to pay a fee. The paper shows convincingly that the difference in behaviour between MPs of the two parties can be explained by their degree of involvement in the policy-making process. Canadian MPs feel involved and thus donít rebel. British MPs donít Ė and therefore do.8 September 2005.