There are a few pro-BNP commenters on Nick Robinsons Newslog, as well as on Have Your Say. Quite a few of them are complaining that the audience was unrepresentative because BNP supporters were ‘hugely outnumbered’ by anti-BNP voices.

But let’s get this into proportion. Six percent of people (and less than two percent of all voters) voted for the BNP in the Euro elections. In any representative room they would be hugely outnumbered – and would also probably keep quiet because of the unpopularity of their views.

I suspect that some of the wingnuts’ confusion comes from the fact that their hard-right arguments, particularly around Europe and immigration, are commonly expressed in the mainstream press and online.

If you share those hard-right views, you naturally see their frequent expression as confirmation both of your rightness and that most ‘normal’ (non-political) people agree with you.

If you are then exposed to a truly representative audience, you will imagine it is rigged because the normally vocal right-wing is reduced to its real-life proportion.


Written by Anthony Zacharzewski

Anthony Zacharzewski was one of the founders of Demsoc in 2006. Before starting work for Demsoc in 2010, he was a Whitehall civil servant and a local government officer.