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25 February 2015

Switching voters

Switching voters

At the next election, 39 per cent of evangelicals say they will not be voting for the party they chose in 2010. Amaris Cole asks idea readers why.

"I voted Lib Dem in 2010. I was charmed by the possibility that we could have some fresh people in power. I was even naive enough to think a coalition would mean we'd all pull together and get some good dialogue going on in the Cabinet. I'm not switching just as a reaction to the current government, but that comes into it. I'm also just getting more left wing as I get older and see more cuts to the community projects I am involved with. I'm voting Green in 2015. I live in Durham so it's more of a protest vote really. Well, that and I just did an isidewith.com quiz."
Miriam Skinner

"In 2010 I voted Conservative. I live in a constituency with a large Conservative majority. However in my town the Lib Dems are popular and have a majority on the town council. I voted UKIP in the European election this year. I have become disillusioned with the Conservatives who promised changes over Europe and immigration and also there many U-turns over other policies. I'm also unhappy with their introduction of gay marriage. However I am not totally decided as a big issue in my area is HS2 and the sitting MP is totally against this and she also voted against gay marriage. Will need to study more deeply the other parties' manifestoes before deciding."
Stephen Dix

"In 2010 I voted Lib Dems because they seemed to be the only alternative big party that spoke honestly and simply about the changes they wanted to make. I didn't go to university, but I feel that it should be free for all, not for those to can afford to get a loan and pay it back. The fact that they not only U-turned on the policy, but wacked up the price to £9,000 makes me not want to trust anything they ever say again. I will be voting Green if they stand in my area Worsley and Eccles South, because they stand for what I believe in. Among lots of great policies, they are for protecting the NHS, scrapping HS2, a fair justice for Palestine and will campaign to the keep the UK in the EU."
Sam Pratt

"At heart I am Conservative. However, I also believe it's important to assess each party's performance and promises on key issues at the time of each election. This time around, I feel I can't in good conscience cast a vote 'for' the Conservatives –Europe and the response to the rise of UKIP being key for me. I am not 'disengaged'. I value my democratic rights, and do not want to be counted among the many who already fail to show at the polls. This time around therefore, unless a tactical vote in my constituency could help keep any extreme or fringe party candidates out, I'll be spoiling my ballot paper."
Becky Jones

"When I voted for a Tory government in the 2010 general election, little did I expect a secular – and in many ways anti-Christian – coalition government. Since then it seems that all of the main political parties have gone out of their way to alienate the Christian voter, allowing us little in the way of choice. Yet our Christian duty is to vote for righteous government. Only one party leader has consistently spoken of the need to uphold our Judaeo-Christian heritage and our Christian values – Nigel Farage. That's why in the next general election I will be voting UKIP."
John O'Conner

"Mainly I've voted Liberal Democrat before now, although once for Conservative. For me, what an MP has done locally has been important, as important as their party's views on social justice. I didn't vote Labour before now as the previously sitting MP of my constituency didn't offer anything constructive in debates, but concentrated on simply saying what a terrible job the neighbouring MP was doing. Labour's track record when in power didn't give me any confidence that they would be true to their socialist routes, and their 'credit-card' of promises that they rather spectacularly abandoned didn't help. I appreciate that the Lib Dems have had to compromise their ideals and policies while in coalition with the Conservatives, and that they have tempered some of the more right-wing policies of the latter, but they have abandoned certain previously solid and resolute policies, such as tuition fees, too quickly and without much justification, even before entering into government. Nick Clegg's attitude to Christians during the same-sex marriage debates was very insulting and was the nail in the coffin, leaving me with no confidence that he and the Lib Dems would fight for social justice and equality. I'm in a quandary who to vote for at the next election. Frankly I would vote Monster Raving Loony Party if I thought that would achieve something! But I am realistic and know that MP's are likely to come from one of the five parties, and that either Labour or the Conservatives will be in power, whether with the help of another party or not. Therefore change has to come from Labour or the Conservatives, and in balance the Conservatives use of welfare leads me to think that Labour might be my only option, one that obviously doesn't give me much hope of the changes I would like to see."
Andrew Avramenko

But what do you think? Add your own comments about who you will be voting for and why. Or you can follow the conversation on Twitter, by sending a tweet to @idea_mag with the hashtag #ShowUp.

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