first past the post

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Related to First-past-the-post: proportional representation
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first past the post

1. noun The first person to reach a particular goal. Primarily heard in UK. I'm so proud of my daughter—she was first past the post in this morning's race.
2. adjective Describing a system of voting in which the candidate with the most votes wins. In this usage, the phrase is typically hyphenated. Primarily heard in UK. You didn't have the most votes, so, in this first-past-the-post system, you don't win the seat.
See also: first, past, post
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

first past the post

If someone is first past the post in a race or competitive situation, they finish first or achieve something first. Note: The following expressions refer to the finishing post in a horse race. First past the post was Kenyan athlete John Mutai, who beat Irishman Jerry Healy by just 20 seconds.
See also: first, past, post
Collins COBUILD Idioms Dictionary, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2012

first past the post

1 (of a contestant, especially a horse, in a race) winning a race by being the first to reach the finishing line. 2 denoting an electoral system whereby a candidate or party is selected by achievement of a simple majority. British
See also: first, past, post
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017
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References in periodicals archive ?
First-past-the-post did not simply put paid to a few Green MPs in this election; it narrowed the focus of debate in a harmful manner.
More countries in the Western world now use proportional representation systems than the first-past-the-post method.
Inequalities inherent in the first-past-the-post system
The AV voting system explained ELECTIONS to the House of Commons are currently held under the first-past-the-post system where each voter marks their ballot with a single X.
Mr Clegg wants proportional representation (PR) to replace first-past-the-post to give smaller parties wider representation in the Commons.
8 for the first-past-the-post election -- the rebels announced the calling off of the planned Oct.
If the election had been entirely carried out under the first-past-the-post system (as per the British Parliament), there would have been a clear winner and therefore stronger Government for Wales.
'It is wrong that a candidate rejected by the electorate in a first-past-the-post election can somehow appear in power in front of the electorate,' said Labour's Baroness Anita Gale of Blaenrhondda in a House of Lords debate a couple of weeks back.
Votes for Westminster are traditional first-past-the-post seats while Holyrood has first-past-the-post seats plus regional MSPs elected using a system of proportional representation.
Liberal Democrat leader Charles Kennedy disclosed that preliminary talks have begun to look at replacing Britain's first-past-the-post system with a form of proportional representation.
follow greyhounds and adopt a first-past-the-post system for betting purposes, writes David Yates.
In a first-past-the-post election, this is a very encouraging result.
Responses to a party-wide consultation exercise showed massive opposition to scrapping the first-past-the-post system for Westminster elections, according to a series of reports.
They have been trying to stop list MSPs getting the pounds 30,000-a-year office allowance given to first-past-the-post MSPs.
But where Welsh Labour slides down the moral slope is in its expression of interest in changing the electoral system to one in which all AMs would be elected on a first-past-the-post basis.