SOME 1.5m Scottish votes were "wasted" in the general election because they had no impact on the result, a new study claims.

The Electoral Reform Society (ERS) found 53.7% of votes did not go towards electing an MP under Westminster's first-past-the-post (FPTP) system.

It has launched a petition to scrap the electoral system saying it remains unfair and does not produce a Parliament that is representative of the people.

It says it is time there was a proportional system for Westminster elections, similar to the one used at Holyrood.

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Boris Johnson swept to power based on a 1% increase in the popular vote compared to when Theresa May fought the 2017 election.

That 1% produce 47 more MPs for the Conservatives in Thursday's vote.

The result was described by the ERS as "warped" and gave the Conservative Party an 80 seat majority under the UK's FPTP system of electing MPs.

HeraldScotland: Voting maybe private but information exchange beforehand is not File photo dated 06/05/10 of a voter placing a ballot paper in the ballot box at a polling station, as each general election could become a nation holiday that has been endorsed by MPs as par

The Liberal Democrats, gained 4% on 2017, but actually lost a seat. Labour’s vote fell by 7.9% while their share of seats fell by slightly more than that at 9.2%. And the SNP had 7.4% of seats on 3.9% of the UK vote.

FPTP is widely criticised for producing levels of representation that are highly disproportionate, leaving the majority of society unhappy with the outcome of the election.

Under FPTP, voters opt for one of the candidates listed on the ballot paper and the person with the most votes wins. All other votes are disregarded.

Complaints about Parliament being unrepresentative of the people surfaced frequently during the long-running debates on how, if or when Britain should exit the EU.

According to the ERS the 1.5m "wasted" Scottish votes represented 53.7% of those that made their choice at the ballot box on Thursday.  

Across the UK the ERS calculated there were 14,513,247 wasted votes, 45.3% of those cast.    This does not take into account those who did not vote or abstained, which made up around one in three of the UK public.

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According to ERS, who want a "fairer" proportional representation method of electing MPs, it took on average just 25,882 votes to elect each SNP MP, but 864,743 votes to elect the lone Green MP.

While it took 38,300 votes to elect each Tory MP, each Liberal Democrat required 334,122 votes, and each Labour MP 50,817 votes.

Darren Hughes, chief executive of the Electoral Reform Society, said: “When millions of voters are totally unrepresented, something has gone badly wrong. These warped results are hard-wired into Westminster’s winner-takes-all voting system.

“It’s a stark reality that the majority of people did not vote for their MP. Westminster’s electoral system is not just bust, it is bankrupt. First Past the Post politics has driven a coach and horses through attempts at dialogue, compromise and co-operation.

“We can’t go on like this. It’s time for Westminster to catch up with most developed democracies and back a genuinely fair, democratic politics – where seats match votes and all voters are heard.

“First Past the Post is forcing people to ‘hold their nose’ every election. It is reducing choice through back-door party pacts. And it is leaving voters alienated and excluded, while warping our national debate.

“We urge all parties to put principle first and bring our political system into the 21st century. With trust in our institutions at rock bottom, this is a vital first step to building a better politics.”

ERS produced a top 10 of the seats which required the smallest share of the vote to win. Three were seats won by the SNP, three were Labour wins and two were Conservative victories.

The SNP needed just 35.3% support to take Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath, while East Lothian needed 36.2% backing and Dunbartonshire East was won with just 37.1%.

Sinn Fein needed just 32.4% support for victory in Down South - the lowest level for a seat win in the election.