Electoral system needs fixing

Justin Trudeau has a golden opportunity to bring a more democratic voting system to Canada

After an election in which 9,093,630 (51.8 per cent) votes went nowhere, Justin Trudeau has a golden opportunity to bring a more democratic voting system to Canada.

Liberals won a majority with 39.5 per cent of the popular vote and more than half of all voters were unable to cast an effective ballot. They now will wait another four years to have the opportunity to elect a representative aligned with their values – or not.

Fair Vote Canada’s executive director declares: “Given the distortion of the popular vote, Trudeau must ensure Canadians will have equal and effective votes in future elections. Never again should we face a one-party, one-man government elected by a minority of voters. We urge you to work with all parties and enact voting rules for a true and modern representative democracy in time for the next election.”

Canadians voted for change. This election was a referendum on the last false-majority government. They coalesced their votes around a promise to end first-past-the-post voting and an opportunity to have a truly democratic voting system that will make all our votes count – only proportional representation can deliver on that promise.

In total, 51.8 per cent of Canadian voters cast votes for losing candidates – with the riding of Pierre-Boucher-Les Patriotes-Verchères casting the most ineffective votes: 71.3 per cent. A system of proportional representation could reduce that number to as low as five per cent.

All parties are hurt by the outcome of winner-take-all elections

Across the country:

93.88 per cent of Green Party voters couldn’t elect a representative

76.78 per cent of Bloc voters couldn’t elect a representative

74.5 per cent of NDP voters couldn’t elect a representative

50.98 per cent of Conservative voters couldn’t elect a representative

And, 33.49 per cent of Liberal voters couldn’t elect a representative

Under a proportional system the seat count would be: Lib 135, Con 109, NDP 68, GPC, 11, Bloc 15.

Last month, over 500 Canadian academics, including several Fellows of the Royal Society of Canada, 29 Canada Research Chairs and two professors with the Order of Canada, called on all political parties to work together to bring in a proportional electoral system.

Fair Vote Canada and its supporters are asking Justin Trudeau to be brave. We are asking him to lead and put the country and its citizens before his party and build a representative democracy where all Canadians have the opportunity to equally participate in the governance and policy making of our country.

We hope he will seize this opportunity to build a country where every citizen is heard, where diversity is respected, and where representatives of a popular majority rule – a democratic country. A country that we can all proudly call Canada.

Fair Vote Canada is a multi-partisan, citizen’s campaign representing of 61,000 Canadians advocating for voting system reform. FVC promotes an introduction of an element of proportional representation in elections at all levels of government and in civil society.

In Kelowna-Lake Country, Stephen Fuhr has indicated he supports proportional representation.

In North Okanagan-Shuswap, Mel Arnold has not indicated his preferences on an electoral system.

For more information on Fair Vote Canada, go to www.fairvote.ca.

Tom Bell, Lake Country

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

The Greater Vernon Ringette Association is one of six Vernon sports groups benefitting from B.C.’s Local Sport Relief Fund. (Morning Star file photo)
Relief funds keep Okanagan in the game

Clubs at risk of closure due to inability to offer programs and fundraise

Clarence Fulton Secondary in Vernon reported its fourth exposure to the virus Thursday, Jan. 21, according to BC School Covid Tracker. (Kerry Hutter photo)
UPDATE: Five Vernon-area schools report positive COVID-19 cases

Schools in Armstrong, Enderby and Vernon have issued letters

A dirty white Dodge Ram similiar to this one was reportedly stolen and then involved in a hit and run on Highway 97 in Lake Country Jan. 16. (Contributed)
Stolen truck that rammed car in Lake Country sought

Man in his 30s seen driving white Dodge Ram

While each person has different reasons for becoming homeless, a UBCO study shows they learn through their interactions with different services to perform ‘as homeless’ based on the expectations of service providers. (Contributed)
Kelowna homeless forced to ‘perform’ for resources, says UBCO study

One participant in the study said ‘It is about looking homeless, but not too homeless’

Emergency worker Tyler Morgan prepares to administer a COVID-19 test at the Juneau International Airport. (Ben Hohenstatt/Juneau Empire)
New COVID-19 cases down 40% in Vernon area: BC CDC

BC Centre of Disease Control reports 59 new cases for local health area; Armstrong sees slight rise

Businesses continue to struggle under COVID-19 restrictions as the pandemic reaches the one-year mark. (B.C. government)
Another 564 COVID-19 cases, mass vaccine plan coming Friday

15 more deaths, community cluster declared in Williams Lake

Voting is the number one, bare minimum way to have your voice heard by government. (File photo)
Jocelyn’s Jottings: Want to make change? Here are some suggestions

As a citizen you have a voice, you just have to know who to talk to

Hedley residents are advised to not drink the water until a pump in one of its wells is fixed. Photo Andrea DeMeer
Hedley residents under do-not-consume-water order due to arsenic levels

Residents in Hedley remain under a do-not-consume-water order, due to higher than… Continue reading

Scammers are luring people in with promises of online relationships, only to later extort money from their victims. (File photo)
Kelowna RCMP warn of ‘sextortion’ scams

RCMP say social media users should be cautious of unsolicited friend requests

Gov. Gen. Julie Payette takes the royal salute from the Guard of Honour as she makes her way deliver the the throne speech, Wednesday, September 23, 2020 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Fred Chartrand
Gov. Gen. Julie Payette resigns, apologizes for ‘tensions’ at Rideau Hall

Payette, who is the Queen’s representative in Canada, has been the governor general since 2017

City of West Kelowna mowing services have been moved in house, saving the city from a potential quarter-million dollar increase in costs. (Pixabay)
West Kelowna cuts mowing contract, saves over $200k

Since forming in 2007, the City of West Kelowna has been contracting out their mowing services

Copper Mountain Mine is Princeton’s largest employer, with approximately 460 workers. Spotlight file photo.
Princeton Copper Mountain Mine worker tests positive for COVID

Town’s largest employer stresses its commitment to safe practices

Grounded WestJet Boeing 737 Max aircraft are shown at the airline’s facilities in Calgary, Alta., Tuesday, May 7, 2019. WestJet will operate the first commercial Boeing 737 Max flight in Canada today since the aircraft was grounded in 2019 following two deadly crashes. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
Passengers unfazed as WestJet returns Boeing 737 Max to service on Vancouver flight

After a lengthy review process, Transport Canada cleared the plane to return to Canadian airspace

The top part of the fossil burrow, seen from the side, with feathery lines from the disturbance of the soil – thought to be caused by the worm pulling prey into the burrow. (Paleoenvironntal Sediment Laboratory/National Taiwan University)
PHOTOS: SFU researchers find evidence of ‘giant’ predatory worms on ocean floor

Fossils found the prove the existence of an ancient Taiwanese worm as long as two metres

Most Read