Voting system favours
The electoral system for England, Scotland and Wales will use closed regional
lists. Under this arrangement most political parties put forward a list of candidates
within each electoral region, listing them in order of priority (hence "regional
However, unlike Westminster and local elections, voters will only be allowed to choose the
party they wish to vote for, not the individual candidate (hence the expression
"closed" list). The only time it's possible to vote for an individual is where
independent candidates unaffiliated to any political party are standing.
After the vote has been counted, the total number of seats within a given region is
distributed between the political parties according to the share of the overall vote they
win. Only candidates placed at the top of a party's list have a realistic chance of
becoming an MEP, the number elected from the list reflecting the strength of support in
the election vote.
Only in Northern Ireland, where there is a different voting system, would you be
allowed to vote for individual candidates in order of preference.