Letter: Forced into cynicism by our undemocratic way of voting

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The Independent Online
Sir: When Derek Young, a Liberal Democrat candidate, states (letter, 18 March) that the format of a TV debate between the party leaders would "reach daft proportions" if the Green Party etc were allowed to participate, is he accepting the logic behind John Major's wish to exclude the Liberal Democrats? That is, large political parties should be allowed to deny small parties a fair chance. It appears that the Liberal Democrats are all for a stitch-up, provided they share in the stitching.

An alarming number of people are finding nothing for them in any of the three "main" parties, and the young especially are not voting at all. To reinvigorate democracy and political thought, small, and nascent, political parties must be given the oxygen of a fair hearing. The public will sort out the genuinely good ideas from the cranky. If the old parties are to be allowed to pull up the drawbridge there is no hope for democracy.

CHRISTOPHER PADLEY

Market Rasen, Lincolnshire

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