Electoral reform is not an NDP initiative

Dear editor,

I don’t understand Delbert Doll’s letter in the Sept. 13 paper (Proportional representation has flaws of its own). He states that the NDP is holding meetings on proportional representational voting and wish to replace the present system. To be clear, all Members of Parliament are trying to provide information to their ridings on this topic. It happens that the MPs for our area are both NDP. The federal Liberal party (not the NDP) has struck a Parliamentary Committee on Electoral Reform and are gathering Canadians’ thoughts about changing the voting system for the next federal election. This is a non-partisan committee with all elected federal political parties represented. Interestingly, out of the 34 countries in the OECD there are only three, including Canada, still using the First Past the Post system. Most countries have abandoned it long ago for a much fairer representation of the actual votes cast.

Mr. Doll also states that we would lose our local representation. While this is one extreme form of proportional voting, there are many others where there is a local representative. David Moscrop from the political science department at UBC gave the presentation at the Filberg Centre and was not representing any political party. He explained the pros and cons of many versions of this type of voting. Two main concerns expressed by the audience were the importance of local representation and a desire not to increase party politics but to have MPs truly represent their community and not just the party line.

Wasn’t this a good thing for Mr. Johns to hear and to take back to Ottawa?

A questionnaire/comment sheet was available which was not from the NDP but from the Parliamentary Committee on Electoral Reform and will be used to collect the thoughts from all interested Canadians from all parts of Canada.

Lesley Krainer

Courtenay

 

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