People’s Action Party’s Vote Share Goes Down, But Gets Parliamentary Supermajority Anyway

The People’s Action Party (PAP) secured a total of 83 seats at the 2020 General Election (GE), with a decreased vote share of 61.24% – a 8.66-percentage-point decrease from the landslide of 69.9% it garnered in GE2015.

This means it will form the next government. The party had called for an election during the Covid-19 pandemic in order to secure a mandate to respond to the crisis – and it received that unequivocally.

While some hiccups and drama unfolded during the campaign, including long queues resulting in the voting hours being extended to 10pm, the national vote showed an expected victory for the PAP.

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PAP scores narrow wins in tough fights

The PAP came out victorious in 83 out of a total of 93 seats, comprising 31 constituencies.

It also scored victories in some constituencies that they expected tough fights in, like East Coast GRC and West Coast GRC.

In East Coast GRC, the PAP won with a slender lead, with 53.41% of the vote, in a campaign known for a high-profile gaffe by anchor minister Heng Swee Keat as well as the return of GE2011 golden girl Nicole Seah for the WP.

In West Coast GRC, the PAP also snagged a tight win of 51.69% of votes against the Progress Singapore Party’s A-team led by former PAP MP Tan Cheng Bock.

In Marymount Single-Member Constituency (SMC), PAP candidate Gan Siow Huang also won with a small lead – she got 55.04% of the vote against Dr Tan’s Progress Singapore Party (PSP) candidate Ang Yong Guan.

In Bukit Panjang SMC, PAP candidate Liang Eng Hwa won an even tighter fight against Singapore Democratic Party (SDP) chairman Paul Tambyah – Mr Liang got 53.74%.

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The PAP’s best-performing result was 74.62% in Jurong GRC, helmed by Senior Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam.

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong did well again in Ang Mo Kio GRC, winning 71.91% of the vote.

WP makes gains in key GRCs

However, the PAP lost Sengkang GRC to the Workers’ Party (WP) in a surprise vote, which may be a significant blow to the party. WP won with 52.13% of the vote.

It also failed to take back Hougang SMC and Aljunied GRC from the WP. The WP won 61.19% of the vote in Hougang and 59.93% in Aljunied.

This means the WP will now have 10 elected MPs in the next Parliament, as well as possibly some Non-Constituency MPs.

WP chief is now officially the Leader of the Opposition, as conferred by PM Lee.

SDP makes gains too

The Singapore Democratic Party (SDP), despite not winning any seats, made gains too.

SDP chairman Paul Tambyah had a decent showing in Bukit Panjang SMC, winning 46.26% of the votes despite losing to the PAP’s Mr Liang Eng Hwa.

SDP secretary-general Chee Soon Juan won 45.20% of the votes in Bukit Batok SMC, losing to the PAP’s Mr Murali Pillai for a 2nd time but increasing his vote share from his previous bout with Mr Murali.

Here’s what Dr Chee and Dr Tambyah had to say about their results.

More young people in politics

Pundits have said the results, especially that in Sengkang GRC, goes by a global trend of younger people going into politics, and younger people having more say in the political process.

If so, it bodes well for the future, they said.

It also remains to be seen who will take up the 10 remaining Non-Constituency MP seats in Parliament.

We wish the new MPs-elect all the best for the next 5 years.

Featured image adapted from Facebook.