first past the post


Also found in: Acronyms.

first past the post

1. noun The first person to reach a particular goal. Primarily heard in UK, Australia. 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

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

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
References in periodicals archive ?
This election has demonstrated that the first past the post system is not fit for purpose for a third time in a row, with over a million wasted votes, 24% of people forced to vote tactically and disproportionate results that do not represent the voices of many people in Wales.
With the adoption of a new 30-30 split between first past the post and regional Assembly Members, that majority would go from a faint possibility to an impossible dream.
But the first past the post system meant that in spite of being the largest party in the Scottish Parliament he ended up with just six UK MPs.
You might think that, as a result, voters have become less attached to the idea that first past the post is the only way of doing things and slightly more willing to contemplate an alternative.
The basic steps in applying the model are: firstly, the total electoral seats for each province are divided into 2/3 first past the post seats and 1/3 proportional seats; then the 2/3 first past the post seats are allocated among the parties in proportion to the seats they won in the actual election; finally, the 1/3 proportional seats are allocated in each province in accordance with the formula described above for Scotland, using the total number of votes obtained by each party in that province.
He said: "I think first past the post would be a better system for the Scottish Parliament and that it should remain the system for the local council elections.
The market is headed by Gleneagles who was an impressive winner of the National Stakes at the Curragh as a juvenile and first past the post in the Prix Jean-Luc Lagardere at Longchamp on Arc day although he did lose the French race in the Stewards' room having shifted right inside the final furlong.
Arguing that parties should no longer expect to win outright majorities and that the first past the post election system is no longer fit for purpose, the Carmarthen East and Dinefwr MP said: "The Westminster elite need to understand that the era of the Labour-Tory duopoly and the age of majority governments is coming to an end due to the way these parties have politically converged.
AFTER everything that the Tories and NO2AV told them about the glories of the First Past The Post electoral system and the evils of the Alternative Vote, people may be surprised next year when they are asked to vote for local police commissioners.
The system of first past the post could have made some sense when the vast majority of the electors voted for one of the two main parties.
Writing in a Sunday newspaper Lord Ashdown said: "Their strategy is clear: Throw as much mud as you can, don't let the issue be discussed openly and frighten the public over the next three weeks into voting to preserve the power the present First Past the Post system gives them.
Until I read in a staunch Tory newspaper (which has called the last four elections wrongly) the following story aimed at scaring its readers into sticking with First Past The Post.
ON May 5, electors will be invited to vote in a UK-wide referendum on whether the present First Past The Post system for electing the Westminster parliament should be replaced by the Alternative Vote (AV) system.
Chennai, June 13 -- As Sri Lanka's experience with the current Proportional Representations (PR) elections leaves a bitter after-taste; it is seriously considering going back to its first past the post system of elections.
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