Why you should vote YES to change elections in Ontario

Mon Sep 24 17:06:29 2007 EST (-0500 GMT)

On October 10th you’ll be asked to vote for an MP in Ontario and also asked if you would like to change the electoral system here. Please make sure that you vote and please help us change our electoral system in Ontario.

Right now your vote only counts for your local MP, and that local MP probably belongs to a party, and the party with the most MPs is put in office and has their leader become Premier. This new system will give you one vote for your local MP and one vote for a party that will be diveded up amongst lists submitted by the parties in advance, a system known as Proportional Representation (PR).

Here’s some reasons why the old system doesn’t work so well:

  • If in every riding let us assume that Ontario votes 32% in favour of party A, 29% for party B and 29% for party C more. In this example people voted against the party in power than for the party that now has 100% of the power!
  • Those votes for party B & C are effectively wasted, when one considers small parties like the Green party or Marijuana party (they’re on a roll) those “wasted” votes can be enough to elect one person, but because they are spread out across the province the current system shuts-out these parties.
  • Right now your one vote isn’t for the party in power, just your local MP, and that person could change parties. In actuality the party in power and the leader probably have a greater influence on your life than your local MP.

Why this purposed system with some Proportional Representation, where you vote for a local MP and cast a separate for a party, is better than the current system.

  • Party votes are never wasted
  • You have more freedom to choose the best MP and the best party/leader
  • Smaller parties like the Green party can really gain a voice in Ontario’s legislature
  • Many mature and new legislatures in Europe and places like Israel use a part-list system to make sure every person can influence how the legislature looks
  • We do need more politicians — I know, tough sell — per capita we are all under represented in Ontario, but I personally feel we need representation more on issues than regions at this point

So that’s my pitch! Please take advantage of this opportunity. This cause means a lot to me; I’ve been a member of Fair Vote Canada since I graduated high school. You can to Fair Vote Canada’s websiteto check out Don Ferguson’s pitch.

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