Friday, February 10, 2017

Has PM Justin Trudeau done his homework on electoral reform?

The Twaddle Prime Minister
It does not appear that Canada's Prime Minister knows enough about electoral systems throughout the developed world. As a result, he seems to have made a decision to break a campaign promise that won his party a majority of seats, and to walk away from remedying the democratic deficit that Canada faces with its undemocratic first past the post system of electing its MPs.

With most of the developed nations using modified proportional representation systems, none of the dangers that Trudeau is now claiming caused him to break his core promise of electoral reform have happened in those countries.

This leads me to the conclusion that once again our prime minister is flying off the seat of his pants, and has not done the homework we expect from a prime minister on such serious matters.

This is his latest claim about why he saved Canada by breaking his promise:

Trudeau said proportional representation would undermine Canada's political tradition of compromise between diverse groups, brokered through the big three political parties that compete in first-past-the-post.

Proportional representation, preferred by the NDP and Greens, could manifest in several systems. The goal is to tie percentage of the national popular vote more closely to representation in Parliament.

"If we were to make a change or risk a change that would augment individual voices — that would augment extremist voices and activist voices that don't get to sit within a party that figures out what's best for the whole future of the country, like the three existing parties do — I think we would be entering a period of instability and uncertainty," he said.

What absolute twaddle! Our democracy is threatened by a system where not every vote counts. Our current system does not result in more Canadians voting (a must if we are to prevent extremists winning power), nor does it reflect the wishes of those who cast votes but whose votes are not reflected in the House.

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