Proportional Representation Part 2

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MegB
Proportional Representation Part 2

Continued from here.

Regions: 
Rev Pesky

Arthur Cramer wrote:
...It might force Liberals to govern less like Tories. That' been the Candian historical experience. I want to see if that was history or 150 years of flukes. Any other questions?

Or it may force them into a coalition with the Conservatives, such as has happened in Germany. After all,  by far the majority of votes in the last election were for either Liberals or Conservatives (just over 70%). If you go hunting for votes, you go where the most votes are.

Sean in Ottawa

Rev Pesky wrote:

Arthur Cramer wrote:
...It might force Liberals to govern less like Tories. That' been the Candian historical experience. I want to see if that was history or 150 years of flukes. Any other questions?

Or it may force them into a coalition with the Conservatives, such as has happened in Germany. After all,  by far the majority of votes in the last election were for either Liberals or Conservatives (just over 70%). If you go hunting for votes, you go where the most votes are.

Great logic. Let's go with that:

By far the greatest majority of votes in the last election were for the Conservatives and NDP.

By far the greatest majority of votes in the last election were for the Liberals and NDP.

Adding up the ovotes of different parties is fun for some and pointless for all. None are interchangeable.

White Cat White Cat's picture

mmphosis wrote:

Why a Referendum on Electoral Reform Would Be Undemocratic (thetyee.ca)

Fair Voting BC president Antony Hodgson wrote:

Progress on civil rights should not be held hostage to a public vote.

Yes, electoral reform is a democratic development that has occurred in 75% of all 181 democratic nations around the globe. To deny this development is no different than denying the development of universal suffrage. (One has to wonder if The Star was against women getting the vote a century ago. I wouldn't be surprised.)

Corrupt Liberal governments in BC and Ontario promised electoral reform and in its place delivered designed-to-fail referendums. (Interesting to think about the kind of conversations that went on in meetings on how to deal with the ER promise after getting elected. "Ok, so we promised electoral reform. Now how exactly do we get out of it? Any ideas?")

They came up with some very good ones: 1) demand a 60% threshold for change; 2) polarize the referendum options (the same as eliminating parties from an election ballot); 3) tack the referendum onto a general election so the issue gets buried; 4) assault the public education process by: a) suppressing campaigning; b) let the on-the-take news media work its magic: "strong, stable government vs. legislative chaos."

Just imagine that in order for Justin Trudeau to be the greatest prime minister in Canadian history, he just has to do his job and not be a corrupt POS like all the rest of them. (That includes his father who choose corruption over democracy; he talked ER after the PCs won on less of the vote in 1979, but had a change of heart after winning a fake majority in 1980. Same as Harper.)

Will young Luke Skywalker simply do the right thing? Or will he end up on the wrong side of history?

White Cat White Cat's picture

JKR wrote:
My guess is that a semi-proportional system of MMP will end up being supported by the all-party committee. Something like 1 in 6 MP's coming from regional open-lists. So our 338 member House of Commons would have something like 60 additional members added to produce added but limited proportionality.

Do PR supporters need to be married to MMP? I think it'd be better to be flexible and change tack if the winds are blowing in the STV direction.

It seems to me that open regional lists are just a complicated way of doing STV multi-member ridings. Multi-member ridings are simpler to explain, and have a simpler ballot.

This also trumps Trudeau's comment against PR:

Justin Trudeau wrote:
I do not support proportional representation because I believe deeply that every Member of Parliament should represent actual Canadians and Canadian communities, not just political parties.

I support a preferential ballot because I believe it will lead to a more substantive and civil debate during elections and a more representative government afterward.

With STV, every MP is directly elected. So, by Trudeau's reasoning, there is no conflict between personal and party representation. No reason to oppose proportional voting. More members per riding will better represent "actual Canadians and communities" more diversely than single-member ridings.

Both STV and MMP are fully proportional voting systems. Either way is the victory.

Pondering

White Cat wrote:

Will young Luke Skywalker simply do the right thing? Or will he end up on the wrong side of history?

What is the right thing? I lean towards a referendum, even if the government heavily promotes one side, but would settle for broad consultations and broad support from civil society including such organizations as the Council for Canadians who are in favor of PR.

It has been mentioned that the 18 month time frame is too short to consider everything in Trudeau's list of possible democratic reforms. Like his refugee commitment he may have been too optimistic on the time frame. He did reiterate his commitment to ER in his throne speech and he did appoint a minister of democratic reform so I am hopeful that the initiative is real. From my perspective he has 4 years to keep his commitment that this was the last election under FPTP. It's not something that happens in one day so we should see regular progress happening. We should see meetings and public debates and some details on the options being considered especially as PR varies so much between countries. Our system should be designed to meet Canada's specific needs and issues.

I'm really excited about Dion's P3 model. I think that it does take Canada's peculiarities into account and would lead to a much higher caliber of MPs that better reflect the views of party supporters. The MPs would be much more important than they are now because they would be chosen separately from the leader. They would all be strong people that speak up. It would provide a counterpoint to the power of the leader and executive. There would be no "backbenchers" in the sense of neophytes that were elected based on party and leader rather than on their own record.

I hope that Dion's support for it means it has a good chance of being adopted.

 

 

Wilf Day

JKR posted in the previous thread:

Quote:
My guess is that a semi-proportional system of MMP will end up being supported by the all-party committee. Something like 1 in 6 MP's coming from regional open-lists. So our 338 member House of Commons would have something like 60 additional members added to produce added but limited proportionality.

I don't know whether any Liberal MPs will be interested in expanding the House. If so, someone should present this model. If there is no reason to believe this is on the radar, no one will present it. There are several plausible models to be presented to the Special Committee. Snowing them under with multiple models will only feed the myth that PR is too complicated, and the line that there is no consensus on a PR model.

Is your guess based on any inside information?

 

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
Yes, electoral reform is a democratic development that has occurred in 75% of all 181 democratic nations around the globe. To deny this development is no different than denying the development of universal suffrage.

Or capitalism, I guess, if it's a numbers game.

JKR

White Cat wrote:

Both STV and MMP are fully proportional voting systems. Either way is the victory.

I think STV is a non-starter because the size of the federal ridings required would be too far too large for most people. Even 3-seat STV would require tripling the size of our current federal ridings. MMP with 25% extra-member seats would require only a 33% increase in our current ridings.

JKR

Wilf Day wrote:

JKR posted in the previous thread:

Quote:
My guess is that a semi-proportional system of MMP will end up being supported by the all-party committee. Something like 1 in 6 MP's coming from regional open-lists. So our 338 member House of Commons would have something like 60 additional members added to produce added but limited proportionality.

I don't know whether any Liberal MPs will be interested in expanding the House. If so, someone should present this model. If there is no reason to believe this is on the radar, no one will present it. There are several plausible models to be presented to the Special Committee. Snowing them under with multiple models will only feed the myth that PR is too complicated, and the line that there is no consensus on a PR model.

Is your guess based on any inside information?

 

If the House of Commons isn't expanded, is there enough time for a federal electoral boundaries commission to establish new electoral boundaries that would accommodate p.r. in time for the next election? I think without expanding the House of Commons, there will not be enough time to institute p.r. in time for the 2019 election. I guess they could go back to the 308 boundaries but that would also require adding seats to the House of Commons in order to establish p.r., but not as many seats as would be required under the 338 seat boundaries.

My guesses are not based on inside information, just a guess on what kind of compromise Liberals, Conservatives, NDP'ers, BQ'ers, and Greens could arrive at within the all-party committee.

Sean in Ottawa

I think a move to something more proportional is needed. I don't think it has to be strictly or perfectly proportionate. Therefore, I can accept a block of party list seats designed as a counterweight to the inequity of FPTP. I consider this better than any ranked ballots which as I have said are perfect when electing a single option but not for creating a proportional parliament reflective of the wish of a diversity of people rather than just an amplified majority.

JKR

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

I think a move to something more proportional is needed. I don't think it has to be strictly or perfectly proportionate. Therefore, I can accept a block of party list seats designed as a counterweight to the inequity of FPTP. I consider this better than any ranked ballots which as I have said are perfect when electing a single option but not for creating a proportional parliament reflective of the wish of a diversity of people rather than just an amplified majority.

I think on the all-party committee, the Conservatives will attempt to keep FPTP and the Liberals will mostly prefer instant runoff voting. So I expect that both the Conservatives and, to a lesser extent, the Liberals will not be supporting p.r. I think the members of the all-party committee from the NDP, BQ, and Greens will mostly support p.r. I also think ranked ballots will be a secondary issue as ranked voting can be made to be a part of either a proportional or un-proportional system.

I think it should also be considered that a semi-proportional MMP system could be made more proportional over time. So establishing a semi-proportional version of MMP now could lead to a more proportional version being established over time. But the reverse is also true. An MMP system could also be made to be less proportional by future governments. So I think that establishing any sort of MMP system now would be a victory for those who support p.r. and that it would likely be a good idea to compromise on the level of proportionality now in order to secure the advent of MMP in Canada and open the door to increased proportionality in the future.

Pondering

JKR wrote:
White Cat wrote:

Both STV and MMP are fully proportional voting systems. Either way is the victory.

I think STV is a non-starter because the size of the federal ridings required would be too far too large for most people. Even 3-seat STV would require tripling the size of our current federal ridings. MMP with 25% extra-member seats would require only a 33% increase in our current ridings.

Dion's P3 system requires districts which are very large but I don't think people would have a problem with that. As it stands most people are voting for party and leader not for their local MP with the exception of the big name MPs. Dion's system doesn't require the addition of any MPs and I think that is a big selling point.

The trade off is that they can ensure the best MPs of the party they support are elected.

Rev Pesky

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

Rev Pesky wrote:

Arthur Cramer wrote:
...It might force Liberals to govern less like Tories. That' been the Candian historical experience. I want to see if that was history or 150 years of flukes. Any other questions?

Or it may force them into a coalition with the Conservatives, such as has happened in Germany. After all,  by far the majority of votes in the last election were for either Liberals or Conservatives (just over 70%). If you go hunting for votes, you go where the most votes are.

Great logic. Let's go with that:

By far the greatest majority of votes in the last election were for the Conservatives and NDP.

By far the greatest majority of votes in the last election were for the Liberals and NDP.

Adding up the ovotes of different parties is fun for some and pointless for all. None are interchangeable.

Except of course that it is exactly the way it played out in Germany. The Christian Democratic Union reached an agreement with the Social Democrats for a coalition government. When I go fishing, I go fishing in waters where there's known to be fish. You, of course, are entitled to fish whereever you like.

JKR

Pondering wrote:

JKR wrote:
White Cat wrote:

Both STV and MMP are fully proportional voting systems. Either way is the victory.

I think STV is a non-starter because the size of the federal ridings required would be too far too large for most people. Even 3-seat STV would require tripling the size of our current federal ridings. MMP with 25% extra-member seats would require only a 33% increase in our current ridings.

Dion's P3 system requires districts which are very large but I don't think people would have a problem with that. As it stands most people are voting for party and leader not for their local MP with the exception of the big name MPs. Dion's system doesn't require the addition of any MPs and I think that is a big selling point.

The trade off is that they can ensure the best MPs of the party they support are elected.

Dion's P3 system and 5 seat STV and 5 seat party list systems would require having ridings that average 500,000 voters. I think that is too large for most Canadians. They all would also require not having single-seat ridings that seem to provide the type of local representation that many Canadians seem fond of. Personally I actually prefer STV but I don't think most Canadians would prefer it.

Dion's P3 system, MMP, and STV, all don't require the addition of extra MP's but they all would require the reconfiguration of the current electoral boundaries if no MP's are added. This might require too much time in order to replace FPTP by 2019. Obviously instant runoff voting could be established immediately with the exact current electoral boundaries.

JKR

Rev Pesky wrote:

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

Rev Pesky wrote:

Arthur Cramer wrote:
...It might force Liberals to govern less like Tories. That' been the Candian historical experience. I want to see if that was history or 150 years of flukes. Any other questions?

Or it may force them into a coalition with the Conservatives, such as has happened in Germany. After all,  by far the majority of votes in the last election were for either Liberals or Conservatives (just over 70%). If you go hunting for votes, you go where the most votes are.

Great logic. Let's go with that:

By far the greatest majority of votes in the last election were for the Conservatives and NDP.

By far the greatest majority of votes in the last election were for the Liberals and NDP.

Adding up the ovotes of different parties is fun for some and pointless for all. None are interchangeable.

Except of course that it is exactly the way it played out in Germany. The Christian Democratic Union reached an agreement with the Social Democrats for a coalition government. When I go fishing, I go fishing in waters where there's known to be fish. You, of course, are entitled to fish whereever you like.

I think more Germans prefer the CDU-SD coalition government over a phony CDU majority that would have occurred had Germany used FPTP. Germany's CDU-SD coalition clearly represents a large majority of German voters.

Rev Pesky

JKR wrote:
...I think more Germans prefer the CDU-SD coalition government over a phony CDU majority that would have occurred had Germany used FPTP. Germany's CDU-SD coalition clearly represents a large majority of German voters.

Which, as I suggested, could easily lead to a Liberal-Conservative coalition here in Canada. After all, the combined votes for those two parties came in around 70% of the popular vote. That is certainly a majority of the vote. And I hope those who've been busy explaining tiime after time that the Liberals are really the same as Conservatives won't try to tell me that in the end the Liberals with side with the NDP...

JKR

Rev Pesky wrote:

JKR wrote:
...I think more Germans prefer the CDU-SD coalition government over a phony CDU majority that would have occurred had Germany used FPTP. Germany's CDU-SD coalition clearly represents a large majority of German voters.

Which, as I suggested, could easily lead to a Liberal-Conservative coalition here in Canada. After all, the combined votes for those two parties came in around 70% of the popular vote. That is certainly a majority of the vote. And I hope those who've been busy explaining tiime after time that the Liberals are really the same as Conservatives won't try to tell me that in the end the Liberals with side with the NDP...

The CDU/CSU received 49.29% of the seats in the German Bundestag so the only viable partner the SPD had was the CDU/CSU. If the SPD and Greens had received over 50% of the seats they would have very likely formed a coalition government. So if in a p.r. election in Canada the Conservatives received 49% of the seats, the Liberals 30%, the NDP 10%, the BQ 6%, and the Greens 5%, the most likely coalition would be a Conservative-Liberal coalition. But if the Liberals-NDP-Greens had a majority of the seats, my guess is that they would establish a coalition. A Liberal-NDP coalition would also be more likely than a Liberal-Conservative coalition if the Liberals and NDP received a majority of seats. On the other hand, p.r. would likely moderate the Conservatives as they would no longer be able to win phoney FPTP majority governments. A more moderate Conservative Party would more likely be able to form coalitions with other parties, most likely the Liberals. P.r. would be beneficial in that it would not allow a party the ability to form a phony majority government by aiming their policies at just a minority core of voters like the Conservatives have.

White Cat White Cat's picture

Pondering wrote:
What is the right thing? I lean towards a referendum, even if the government heavily promotes one side, but would settle for broad consultations and broad support from civil society including such organizations as the Council for Canadians who are in favor of PR.

The right thing is for Canada to develop its democracy like 75% of all 181 democratic nations across the globe. Trudeau's job is to find some kind of compromise that will represent the wishes of a majority of Canadians.

Since Canadians are not familiar with electoral reform, this compromise would appear to lean towards a semi-proportional system, which can be upgraded at a future time. Of course, fully-proportional systems are the norm here on planet Earth, especially in the developed world (85% of have fully-proportional voting systems.)

Pondering wrote:
I'm really excited about Dion's P3 model. I think that it does take Canada's peculiarities into account and would lead to a much higher caliber of MPs that better reflect the views of party supporters. The MPs would be much more important than they are now because they would be chosen separately from the leader. They would all be strong people that speak up. It would provide a counterpoint to the power of the leader and executive. There would be no "backbenchers" in the sense of neophytes that were elected based on party and leader rather than on their own record.

I hope that Dion's support for it means it has a good chance of being adopted.

Agreed. We will be very fortunate if we end up with Dion's P3 model given how the corporate news media is trashing electoral reform.

Good point about how STV multi-member tends to higher caliber MPs. (Under STV, Torontonians could vote for both Chrystia Freeland and Linda McQuaig to represent them, instead of one or the other. Policy over politicking.)

White Cat White Cat's picture

Mr. Magoo wrote:

Quote:
Yes, electoral reform is a democratic development that has occurred in 75% of all 181 democratic nations around the globe. To deny this development is no different than denying the development of universal suffrage.

Or capitalism, I guess, if it's a numbers game.

Sweden and Norway are capitalist countries: left-leaning Keynesian mixed-market. (The centrist mixed-market system is a combination of socialism and capitalism.)

Certainly anti-capitalism is back in fashion, like during the 1930s. More than just a little bit of history repeating. And history would seem to indicate that the left-wing extreme is just as anti-social, anti-democratic and anti-freedom as the right-wing extreme.

White Cat White Cat's picture

JKR wrote:
White Cat wrote:

Both STV and MMP are fully proportional voting systems. Either way is the victory.

I think STV is a non-starter because the size of the federal ridings required would be too far too large for most people. Even 3-seat STV would require tripling the size of our current federal ridings. MMP with 25% extra-member seats would require only a 33% increase in our current ridings.

Hopefully the electoral reform committee will examine all major voting systems and not summarily dismiss any of them.

When it comes to the two modern forms of PR — MMP and STV — it's really a difference of splitting hairs. Both systems have undesirable elements. STV multi-member has larger ridings; MMP has more politicians and an inelegant 'top-up' distribution of party-list seats to the "losers."

Considering British Columbians supported STV with a 58% majority in 2005, this could very well be the best way forward. If the committee takes the STV path, then PR supporters should get behind it. (The opposite would only prove absurd.)

White Cat White Cat's picture

JKR wrote:
Rev Pesky wrote:

JKR wrote:
...I think more Germans prefer the CDU-SD coalition government over a phony CDU majority that would have occurred had Germany used FPTP. Germany's CDU-SD coalition clearly represents a large majority of German voters.

Which, as I suggested, could easily lead to a Liberal-Conservative coalition here in Canada. After all, the combined votes for those two parties came in around 70% of the popular vote. That is certainly a majority of the vote. And I hope those who've been busy explaining tiime after time that the Liberals are really the same as Conservatives won't try to tell me that in the end the Liberals with side with the NDP...

The CDU/CSU received 49.29% of the seats in the German Bundestag so the only viable partner the SPD had was the CDU/CSU. If the SPD and Greens had received over 50% of the seats they would have very likely formed a coalition government. So if in a p.r. election in Canada the Conservatives received 49% of the seats, the Liberals 30%, the NDP 10%, the BQ 6%, and the Greens 5%, the most likely coalition would be a Conservative-Liberal coalition. But if the Liberals-NDP-Greens had a majority of the seats, my guess is that they would establish a coalition. A Liberal-NDP coalition would also be more likely than a Liberal-Conservative coalition if the Liberals and NDP received a majority of seats. On the other hand, p.r. would likely moderate the Conservatives as they would no longer be able to win phoney FPTP majority governments. A more moderate Conservative Party would more likely be able to form coalitions with other parties, most likely the Liberals. P.r. would be beneficial in that it would not allow a party the ability to form a phony majority government by aiming their policies at just a minority core of voters like the Conservatives have.

This is why I prefer STV to MMP. MMP is pure PR, which gives full representation to revolutionary parties that are impossible to work with in government.

Germany should be a lesson to electoral reformers in Canada. In 2005 and 2013, a majority of Germans voted for center-left government. But because the center-left vote was divided between three major parties — the Social Democrats, the Left, and the Greens — with two parties being revolutionary, the end result was right-leaning grand coalitions.

Certainly grand coalitions are better than FPTP dictatorships (which in Canada are either right-of-center or right-wing despite 60% of the electorate being center-left.)

But what's even better is actual center-left government if that's what the people voted for!

So a system like STV, which requires that MPs are directly elected with a majority vote in multi-member ridings, will accomplish two things: 1) moderate the amount of power revolutionary parties get; 2) allow revolutionaries indirect representation for their alternative votes.

Legislatures are for legislating. There are many platforms around these days for the gum flappers, which they can use to accomplish a lot more than the odd question in Question Period (which will either be ignored or excoriated by the corporate news media.)

Sean in Ottawa

White Cat wrote:

JKR wrote:
Rev Pesky wrote:

JKR wrote:
...I think more Germans prefer the CDU-SD coalition government over a phony CDU majority that would have occurred had Germany used FPTP. Germany's CDU-SD coalition clearly represents a large majority of German voters.

Which, as I suggested, could easily lead to a Liberal-Conservative coalition here in Canada. After all, the combined votes for those two parties came in around 70% of the popular vote. That is certainly a majority of the vote. And I hope those who've been busy explaining tiime after time that the Liberals are really the same as Conservatives won't try to tell me that in the end the Liberals with side with the NDP...

The CDU/CSU received 49.29% of the seats in the German Bundestag so the only viable partner the SPD had was the CDU/CSU. If the SPD and Greens had received over 50% of the seats they would have very likely formed a coalition government. So if in a p.r. election in Canada the Conservatives received 49% of the seats, the Liberals 30%, the NDP 10%, the BQ 6%, and the Greens 5%, the most likely coalition would be a Conservative-Liberal coalition. But if the Liberals-NDP-Greens had a majority of the seats, my guess is that they would establish a coalition. A Liberal-NDP coalition would also be more likely than a Liberal-Conservative coalition if the Liberals and NDP received a majority of seats. On the other hand, p.r. would likely moderate the Conservatives as they would no longer be able to win phoney FPTP majority governments. A more moderate Conservative Party would more likely be able to form coalitions with other parties, most likely the Liberals. P.r. would be beneficial in that it would not allow a party the ability to form a phony majority government by aiming their policies at just a minority core of voters like the Conservatives have.

This is why I prefer STV to MMP. MMP is pure PR, which gives full representation to revolutionary parties that are impossible to work with in government.

Germany should be a lesson to electoral reformers in Canada. In 2005 and 2013, a majority of Germans voted for center-left government. But because the center-left vote was divided between three major parties — the Social Democrats, the Left, and the Greens — with two parties being revolutionary, the end result was right-leaning grand coalitions.

Certainly grand coalitions are better than FPTP dictatorships (which in Canada are either right-of-center or right-wing despite 60% of the electorate being center-left.)

But what's even better is actual center-left government if that's what the people voted for!

So a system like STV, which requires that MPs are directly elected with a majority vote in multi-member ridings, will accomplish two things: 1) moderate the amount of power revolutionary parties get; 2) allow revolutionaries indirect representation for their alternative votes.

Legislatures are for legislating. There are many platforms around these days for the gum flappers, which they can use to accomplish a lot more than the odd question in Question Period (which will either be ignored or excoriated by the corporate news media.)

I mostly ignore your posts now as they are mostly nonsense but from time to time it seems important to correct false statments. In this case the dynamic you speak of in the German election has absolutely nothing to do with the seats being divided as PR addresses that problem. The issue in 2005 was that the left party refused to work with the SDP (it was mutual) and took itself out of the coalition calculations. The result was a reduced number of fairly absurd coalition options. This is what allowed the right to keep power. In 2009 the right had a government alone  (CDU/CSU FDP).

In 2013: the left party, the SDP and the Greens had only 50.7% of the seats (only 42% of the vote). However, the left party and the SDP refused to work together. In the end the SDP had to work with the CDU to get a government.

This has nothing to do with voting systems and everything to do with two parties that would ahve been more natural allies refusing to work together.

Please get your facts straight as this is a very well-known situation in German politics that has nothing to do with where you are trying to take it.

Your connection to a Canadian context is utter nonsense as well.

The Right (CDSU/CSU FDP

Any party elected in any system can create havoc if they are unwilling to participate in

Sean in Ottawa

White Cat wrote:

JKR wrote:
Rev Pesky wrote:

JKR wrote:
...I think more Germans prefer the CDU-SD coalition government over a phony CDU majority that would have occurred had Germany used FPTP. Germany's CDU-SD coalition clearly represents a large majority of German voters.

Which, as I suggested, could easily lead to a Liberal-Conservative coalition here in Canada. After all, the combined votes for those two parties came in around 70% of the popular vote. That is certainly a majority of the vote. And I hope those who've been busy explaining tiime after time that the Liberals are really the same as Conservatives won't try to tell me that in the end the Liberals with side with the NDP...

The CDU/CSU received 49.29% of the seats in the German Bundestag so the only viable partner the SPD had was the CDU/CSU. If the SPD and Greens had received over 50% of the seats they would have very likely formed a coalition government. So if in a p.r. election in Canada the Conservatives received 49% of the seats, the Liberals 30%, the NDP 10%, the BQ 6%, and the Greens 5%, the most likely coalition would be a Conservative-Liberal coalition. But if the Liberals-NDP-Greens had a majority of the seats, my guess is that they would establish a coalition. A Liberal-NDP coalition would also be more likely than a Liberal-Conservative coalition if the Liberals and NDP received a majority of seats. On the other hand, p.r. would likely moderate the Conservatives as they would no longer be able to win phoney FPTP majority governments. A more moderate Conservative Party would more likely be able to form coalitions with other parties, most likely the Liberals. P.r. would be beneficial in that it would not allow a party the ability to form a phony majority government by aiming their policies at just a minority core of voters like the Conservatives have.

This is why I prefer STV to MMP. MMP is pure PR, which gives full representation to revolutionary parties that are impossible to work with in government.

Germany should be a lesson to electoral reformers in Canada. In 2005 and 2013, a majority of Germans voted for center-left government. But because the center-left vote was divided between three major parties — the Social Democrats, the Left, and the Greens — with two parties being revolutionary, the end result was right-leaning grand coalitions.

Certainly grand coalitions are better than FPTP dictatorships (which in Canada are either right-of-center or right-wing despite 60% of the electorate being center-left.)

But what's even better is actual center-left government if that's what the people voted for!

So a system like STV, which requires that MPs are directly elected with a majority vote in multi-member ridings, will accomplish two things: 1) moderate the amount of power revolutionary parties get; 2) allow revolutionaries indirect representation for their alternative votes.

Legislatures are for legislating. There are many platforms around these days for the gum flappers, which they can use to accomplish a lot more than the odd question in Question Period (which will either be ignored or excoriated by the corporate news media.)

I mostly ignore your posts now as they are mostly nonsense but from time to time it seems important to correct false statments. In this case the dynamic you speak of in the German election has absolutely nothing to do with the seats being divided as PR addresses that problem. The issue in 2005 was that the left party refused to work with the SDP (it was mutual) and took itself out of the coalition calculations. The result was a reduced number of fairly absurd coalition options. This is what allowed the right to keep power. In 2009 the right had a government alone  (CDU/CSU FDP).

In 2013: the left party, the SDP and the Greens had only 50.7% of the seats (only 42% of the vote). However, the left party and the SDP refused to work together. In the end the SDP had to work with the CDU to get a government.

This has nothing to do with voting systems and everything to do with two parties that would have been more natural allies refusing to work together.

Please get your facts straight as this is a very well-known situation in German politics that has nothing to do with where you are trying to take it.

Your connection to a Canadian context is utter nonsense as well.

 

Wilf Day

JKR wrote:

If the House of Commons isn't expanded, is there enough time for a federal electoral boundaries commission to establish new electoral boundaries that would accommodate p.r. in time for the next election? I think without expanding the House of Commons, there will not be enough time to institute p.r. in time for the 2019 election. I guess they could go back to the 308 boundaries but that would also require adding seats to the House of Commons in order to establish p.r., but not as many seats as would be required under the 338 seat boundaries.

Yes. 

Table legislation: by May 4, 2017.

Pass through House and Senate, get Royal Assent, and appoint Boundaries Commissions: Nov. 14, 2017 (Sept. 14 would be better.)

Final reports of Boundaries Commissions: by Feb 14, 2019, seven months before the election is called, as Elections Canada needs

Next election called: Sept. 14, 2019. 

The Liberal platform said "Within 18 months of forming government, we will introduce legislation to enact electoral reform.”

This timetable was identical to the NDP’s, because both parties had done their homework, and discussed it with Elections Canada staff: that’s how long it takes, to have it in place for the 2019 election.

Fall-back plan: Appoint the new Commissions while the legislation is still in the Senate. Messy procedurally, but it doesn't matter much.

mark_alfred

Wilf Day wrote:

JKR wrote:

If the House of Commons isn't expanded, is there enough time for a federal electoral boundaries commission to establish new electoral boundaries that would accommodate p.r. in time for the next election? I think without expanding the House of Commons, there will not be enough time to institute p.r. in time for the 2019 election. I guess they could go back to the 308 boundaries but that would also require adding seats to the House of Commons in order to establish p.r., but not as many seats as would be required under the 338 seat boundaries.

Yes. 

Table legislation: by May 4, 2017.

Pass through House and Senate, get Royal Assent, and appoint Boundaries Commissions: Nov. 14, 2017 (Sept. 14 would be better.)

Final reports of Boundaries Commissions: by Feb 14, 2019, seven months before the election is called, as Elections Canada needs

Next election called: Sept. 14, 2019. 

The Liberal platform said "Within 18 months of forming government, we will introduce legislation to enact electoral reform.”

This timetable was identical to the NDP’s, because both parties had done their homework, and discussed it with Elections Canada staff: that’s how long it takes, to have it in place for the 2019 election.

Fall-back plan: Appoint the new Commissions while the legislation is still in the Senate. Messy procedurally, but it doesn't matter much.

Thanks Wilf.  Great to know.

White Cat White Cat's picture

Wilf Day wrote:

JKR wrote:

If the House of Commons isn't expanded, is there enough time for a federal electoral boundaries commission to establish new electoral boundaries that would accommodate p.r. in time for the next election? I think without expanding the House of Commons, there will not be enough time to institute p.r. in time for the 2019 election. I guess they could go back to the 308 boundaries but that would also require adding seats to the House of Commons in order to establish p.r., but not as many seats as would be required under the 338 seat boundaries.

Yes. 

Table legislation: by May 4, 2017.

Pass through House and Senate, get Royal Assent, and appoint Boundaries Commissions: Nov. 14, 2017 (Sept. 14 would be better.)

Final reports of Boundaries Commissions: by Feb 14, 2019, seven months before the election is called, as Elections Canada needs

Next election called: Sept. 14, 2019. 

The Liberal platform said "Within 18 months of forming government, we will introduce legislation to enact electoral reform.”

This timetable was identical to the NDP’s, because both parties had done their homework, and discussed it with Elections Canada staff: that’s how long it takes, to have it in place for the 2019 election.

Fall-back plan: Appoint the new Commissions while the legislation is still in the Senate. Messy procedurally, but it doesn't matter much.

It should be noted that whether the committee chooses MMP or STV multi-member ridings, the election boundaries will have to be redrawn.

I think Stephane Dion's 3-member STV system offers the best compromise possible. It's simple and easy to explain. It doesn’t require additional politicians. It's easy to upgrade by adding more members to ridings or adding party-list seats. Stephane Dion is also a prominent member of Fair Vote Canada.

Right now Canadians are unsure about electoral reform because of all the lies spread by the corporate news media. But after they get experience with a semi-proportional system, they will be more open to fully proportional voting, like the rest of the world.

The most important goal here is to get a semi-proportional system put in place to have something to work with in the future. If the process fails completely, we will be stuck with FPTP forever. (Or until the NDP wins a FPTP false majority: whichever comes first…)

White Cat White Cat's picture

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

White Cat wrote:

This is why I prefer STV to MMP. MMP is pure PR, which gives full representation to revolutionary parties that are impossible to work with in government.

Germany should be a lesson to electoral reformers in Canada. In 2005 and 2013, a majority of Germans voted for center-left government. But because the center-left vote was divided between three major parties — the Social Democrats, the Left, and the Greens — with two parties being revolutionary, the end result was right-leaning grand coalitions.

Certainly grand coalitions are better than FPTP dictatorships (which in Canada are either right-of-center or right-wing despite 60% of the electorate being center-left.)

But what's even better is actual center-left government if that's what the people voted for!

So a system like STV, which requires that MPs are directly elected with a majority vote in multi-member ridings, will accomplish two things: 1) moderate the amount of power revolutionary parties get; 2) allow revolutionaries indirect representation for their alternative votes.

Legislatures are for legislating. There are many platforms around these days for the gum flappers, which they can use to accomplish a lot more than the odd question in Question Period (which will either be ignored or excoriated by the corporate news media.)

I mostly ignore your posts now as they are mostly nonsense but from time to time it seems important to correct false statments. In this case the dynamic you speak of in the German election has absolutely nothing to do with the seats being divided as PR addresses that problem. The issue in 2005 was that the left party refused to work with the SDP (it was mutual) and took itself out of the coalition calculations. The result was a reduced number of fairly absurd coalition options. This is what allowed the right to keep power. In 2009 the right had a government alone  (CDU/CSU FDP).

In 2013: the left party, the SDP and the Greens had only 50.7% of the seats (only 42% of the vote). However, the left party and the SDP refused to work together. In the end the SDP had to work with the CDU to get a government.

This has nothing to do with voting systems and everything to do with two parties that would have been more natural allies refusing to work together.

Please get your facts straight as this is a very well-known situation in German politics that has nothing to do with where you are trying to take it.

Your connection to a Canadian context is utter nonsense as well.

The representation splitting I'm talking about — big sections of the legislature made toxic by revolutionary parties under a pure proportional system like MMP or party-list PR — is very relevant to Canada.

With MMP 5%, the Greens and the Bloc are virtually guaranteed to make the cut and wipe out over 10% of the representation on the center-left side. That makes center-left government less likely; grand coalitions more likely.

Do progressives want electoral reform that will bring about actual center-left government that represents the 60% super-majority? Or ideological reform that will stick us with more right-of-center government?

Canadians don't want a complicated system that gives them a bunch of Green and Bloc MPs. (Perhaps another Left party to eat up another 5%.) Pure PR, including MMP, is vulnerable to fringe-party explosion.

STV multi-member, on the other hand, moderates fringe parties, which, I believe, makes it a better fit for a regionally-diverse moderate country wary of revolutionary change.

(BTW, this is the proper way to reply to a debate on a message board: a) support your position with reason and facts; b) don't resort to desperate ad-hominem attacks.)

Pondering

Not requiring additional politicians is a strong benefit because many people think we have too many as it is.

I don't buy the opinion that voters care about the size of their riding. Many voters never know the name of their local candidate. I don't. I voted for Trudeau.

When I was given the option to vote for the Liberal leadership without joining I looked into all the candidates. I know most of their names and remember a bit of their platforms. If I got to actually choose the MP that will represent me I would definitely find out more about them and choose accordingly.

I think it was White Cat that mentioned we could elect both Freeland and McQuaig under the Dion model. That is the only reason that I now support PR. It gives both me and my representative more power and the party less power. If I have an issue to approach my MP with I have several to choose from. They will all be the cream of the crop from their respective parties. 

Greens and Bloc could still win more seats than they do under FPTP. There are plenty of ridings in which they are in second place and either the Conservatives or Liberals are in third so they wouldn't always get knocked out in the first round.I think it would keep out the really ugly racist parties. As an aside could they even exist here with our hate speech laws?

White Cat White Cat's picture

Wilf Day wrote:

JKR posted in the previous thread:

Quote:
My guess is that a semi-proportional system of MMP will end up being supported by the all-party committee. Something like 1 in 6 MP's coming from regional open-lists. So our 338 member House of Commons would have something like 60 additional members added to produce added but limited proportionality.

I don't know whether any Liberal MPs will be interested in expanding the House. If so, someone should present this model. If there is no reason to believe this is on the radar, no one will present it. There are several plausible models to be presented to the Special Committee. Snowing them under with multiple models will only feed the myth that PR is too complicated, and the line that there is no consensus on a PR model.

The Special Committee, like any other legislative committee, will be comprised of lawyers and others capable of keeping up to speed. Its job will be to study the issue of electoral reform in depth and make a recommendation. There's nothing too complicated for this crowd, let alone studying both MMP and STV proportional systems, which is something a high school student can do.

One can only attempt to snow Canadians by suggesting there's an actual consensus on a particular proportional system (or voting system, for that matter.) If there was, it couldn't be MMP. British Columbia, for example, held two STV referendums, one which won by a 58% majority.

The committee will choose a system based on its merits. It doesn't matter what any interest group insists on. A lot more powerful interests will insist we keep FPTP.

Since this is a Liberal committee, it will be looking for a compromise to accommodate the most people. Therefore those capable of understanding the concept of compromise will get the most out of Trudeau's initiative by working with the process, not against it with amateur-hour politicking.

Michael Moriarity Michael Moriarity's picture

Although I personally am one of those fringe lefties that White Cat thinks should be denied representation in parliament, I agree with her/him that Dion's suggested semi-proportional system would be a huge improvement on FPTP, and would be a good first step towards a more fully proportional system. When the time comes to debate what that system should be, I will be in complete disagreement with White Cat.

JKR

Wilf Day wrote:

JKR wrote:

If the House of Commons isn't expanded, is there enough time for a federal electoral boundaries commission to establish new electoral boundaries that would accommodate p.r. in time for the next election? I think without expanding the House of Commons, there will not be enough time to institute p.r. in time for the 2019 election. I guess they could go back to the 308 boundaries but that would also require adding seats to the House of Commons in order to establish p.r., but not as many seats as would be required under the 338 seat boundaries.

Yes. 

Table legislation: by May 4, 2017.

Pass through House and Senate, get Royal Assent, and appoint Boundaries Commissions: Nov. 14, 2017 (Sept. 14 would be better.)

Final reports of Boundaries Commissions: by Feb 14, 2019, seven months before the election is called, as Elections Canada needs

Next election called: Sept. 14, 2019. 

The Liberal platform said "Within 18 months of forming government, we will introduce legislation to enact electoral reform.”

This timetable was identical to the NDP’s, because both parties had done their homework, and discussed it with Elections Canada staff: that’s how long it takes, to have it in place for the 2019 election.

Fall-back plan: Appoint the new Commissions while the legislation is still in the Senate. Messy procedurally, but it doesn't matter much.

I think the Conservatives will be able to effectively stall the electoral reform process if the all-party committee overrides the Conservatives and proposes a fully proportional system or instant runoff ranked voting. I think the opinions of the Conservatives will have to be taken into consideration by the all-party committee, which means that the best that can be expected of the committee is that they will support a semi-proportional system, likely "MMP very lite." I think that would be sufficient progress for the time being.

White Cat White Cat's picture

Michael Moriarity wrote:

Although I personally am one of those fringe lefties that White Cat thinks should be denied representation in parliament, I agree with her/him that Dion's suggested semi-proportional system would be a huge improvement on FPTP, and would be a good first step towards a more fully proportional system. When the time comes to debate what that system should be, I will be in complete disagreement with White Cat.

I'm not talking about denying anyone representation. Truth is, there's an unavoidable tradeoff in representational democracy. The greater the number of parties allowed, the more politically unstable the system becomes.

The norm in the democratic world is that this instability is moderated in one way or another. With MMP or party-list PR, it's moderated with a minimum threshold for party-list seats.

Most countries don't want to have the kind of government instability that low-threshold countries like Israel and Denmark have. So it's up to the people of a particular country to choose their level of government stability.

I don't think an argument can be made that a society is unprincipled for moderating fringe parties because all countries that use proportional voting do it to some degree, including Israel and Denmark. 

White Cat White Cat's picture

I think that STV multi-member moderates the fringe parties the best. This is because they get representation for their alternative votes.

If there are two major center-left parties, there is competition for alternative votes. So, for example, the NDP could go greener to corner the Green vote. More so than in 2015, when they were hampered by the threat of the Red Tory Revolt, which is deadly under FPTP. (10% Red Tory + 30% radical con = 40% Con majority.)

Under MMP or party-list PR, the fringe party is either in or it is out. If it misses the cut, its representation is divided up among the parties that make the cut. So like FPTP, there's no reason for parties that make the cut to represent voters who don't. Like how Chretien won half the NDP vote, but felt absolutely no obligation to represent it.

STV could be best for fringe party voters. If there is an auto-donation based on 1st rank votes, fringe parties can get money for organization to get their message out. This could have a very low threshold. Potentially less than 1%.

In short: fringe parties have more potential under STV because they don't need to be within range of a 4% or 5% threshold to exist. They also have more influence over legislation: under MMP they are cut out of the process whether they make the cut or not; under STV, they must get something in exchange for their alternative votes. 

White Cat White Cat's picture

JKR wrote:

I think the Conservatives will be able to effectively stall the electoral reform process if the all-party committee overrides the Conservatives and proposes a fully proportional system or instant runoff ranked voting. I think the opinions of the Conservatives will have to be taken into consideration by the all-party committee, which means that the best that can be expected of the committee is that they will support a semi-proportional system, likely "MMP very lite." I think that would be sufficient progress for the time being.

The Cons are opposed to electoral reform, period. There's no negotiating with them. Same with many Liberal partisans, as well as plutocrats and their on-the-take news media.

What I don't see is a good explanation for why PR supporters should sing from the MMP hymnbook.

I understand the concept of solidarity. But this may actually work against the PR cause.

Notice all the attacks against proportional voting are concentrated against MMP. They go something like this: 1) more politicians are not the solution to our problems; 2) giving more power to parties will make Parliament even more partisan; 3) proportional voting will cause a fringe party explosion and legislative chaos; 4) PR is too complex to understand; 5) it's better if politicians represent local communities.

A better kind of solidarity is to simply support proportional voting — any kind of proportional voting. This unites PR supporters and provides a moving target: attack something about Mixed-Member PR, there's always STV multi-member PR; attack STV, there's party-list PR; hate party-list PR, there's always Mixed Member PR; etc.

PR supporters should think like Muhammad Ali: "Float like a butterfly. Sting like a bee." Not: "I can just block the punches with my face." Success in Trudeau's ER initiative all boils down to effective strategy.

MMP supporters better come up with some convincing arguments. They will face hostile members in the committee who will grill them worse than I do. If all they have is solidarity, they won't have nearly enough. 

 

Michael Moriarity Michael Moriarity's picture

White Cat wrote:

Michael Moriarity wrote:

Although I personally am one of those fringe lefties that White Cat thinks should be denied representation in parliament, I agree with her/him that Dion's suggested semi-proportional system would be a huge improvement on FPTP, and would be a good first step towards a more fully proportional system. When the time comes to debate what that system should be, I will be in complete disagreement with White Cat.

I'm not talking about denying anyone representation. Truth is, there's an unavoidable tradeoff in representational democracy. The greater the number of parties allowed, the more politically unstable the system becomes.

To be clear, I have no problem with a 5% threshold, but I seem to recall you mentioned MMP 5% as one of the systems you thought would be undesirable because of its encouragement of fringe parties.

Pondering

White Cat wrote:

The Cons are opposed to electoral reform, period. There's no negotiating with them. Same with many Liberal partisans, as well as plutocrats and their on-the-take news media.

What I don't see is a good explanation for why PR supporters should sing from the MMP hymnbook.

I understand the concept of solidarity. But this may actually work against the PR cause.

Notice all the attacks against proportional voting are concentrated against MMP. They go something like this: 1) more politicians are not the solution to our problems; 2) giving more power to parties will make Parliament even more partisan; 3) proportional voting will cause a fringe party explosion and legislative chaos; 4) PR is too complex to understand; 5) it's better if politicians represent local communities.

That definitely sums it up for me except for one point. We would rarely have a majority government which I favor. I'm willing to trade that  for Dion's system because I think it would reduce the power of parties and increase the power of MPs.

One small problem which I think could be addressed without too much difficultly is a means for independents to run.

Pondering

Michael Moriarity wrote:

Although I personally am one of those fringe lefties that White Cat thinks should be denied representation in parliament, I agree with her/him that Dion's suggested semi-proportional system would be a huge improvement on FPTP, and would be a good first step towards a more fully proportional system. When the time comes to debate what that system should be, I will be in complete disagreement with White Cat.

I don't think fringe would necessarily lose out.  In my riding we elect Quebec Solidaire to the provincial government. Even as part of a larger multi-MP riding we would likely elect someone like that on the federal stage too. Far left and fringe are not the same thing to me.

mark_alfred

Great idea:  NDP urges government to cede majority control of electoral reform committee

Quote:

Nathan Cullen, the NDP’s democratic reform critic, says membership on the promised committee should include all parties that won seats in the House of Commons in last October’s election and be proportional to each party’s share of the popular vote.

That would mean five Liberal MPs, three Conservatives, two New Democrats, one Bloc Quebecois and one Green party member.

 

Pondering

Wow! I wonder if Cullen read my post Laughing.

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
That would mean five Liberal MPs, three Conservatives, two New Democrats, one Bloc Quebecois and one Green party member.

If the committee is to be made up of 12, and if the Greens got 3.4% of the popular vote, shouldn't that mean a little less than one half of one Green Party member (given that 1/12th = 8.3%)?

Otherwise, what's proportional about 3.4% of the vote getting 8.3% of the influence?

mark_alfred

It's gets rounded up in the Green's case.  Lucky for them.

mark_alfred

Hmm.  Seems Liberals are looking to their allies in the Senate for an out now.

http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/electoral-reform-constitutional-change-1...

 

White Cat White Cat's picture

Michael Moriarity wrote:

White Cat wrote:

Michael Moriarity wrote:

Although I personally am one of those fringe lefties that White Cat thinks should be denied representation in parliament, I agree with her/him that Dion's suggested semi-proportional system would be a huge improvement on FPTP, and would be a good first step towards a more fully proportional system. When the time comes to debate what that system should be, I will be in complete disagreement with White Cat.

I'm not talking about denying anyone representation. Truth is, there's an unavoidable tradeoff in representational democracy. The greater the number of parties allowed, the more politically unstable the system becomes.

To be clear, I have no problem with a 5% threshold, but I seem to recall you mentioned MMP 5% as one of the systems you thought would be undesirable because of its encouragement of fringe parties.

I don't believe MMP is undesirable. I just think that STV is a better form of PR than MMP. 

White Cat White Cat's picture

Pondering wrote:

We would rarely have a majority government which I favor.

This is actually a common myth.

What would happen in Canada under any kind of electoral reform is that we would end up with 2 major center-left parties and 2 major conservative parties. This will mean stable two-party majority governments that have checks and balances, whether center-left or conservative.

There is no benefit to giving a minority party absolute corrupt power. Look at how on-the-take Liberal premier Kathleen Wynne privatized Ontario's electricity system on the advice of bankers despite outrage from all opposition parties, the media, the public and the Financial Accountability Officer.

Look at Justin Trudeau's platform. He claims to be a progressive that represents the 60% of center-left voters. But his economic platform is tailor made for moderate conservatives: TPP free trade, upper-middle-class tax cuts and opposing daycare and federal carbon pricing.

If Trudeau had to work with the NDP, Canada would've gotten actual center-left government that represented an actual majority of center-left voters.

So electoral reform would mean an end to minority-party dictatorships that tend to implode in corruption and the beginning of real majority government that serves out the entire election term without polarizing FPTP drama. 

White Cat White Cat's picture

mark_alfred wrote:

Great idea:  NDP urges government to cede majority control of electoral reform committee

Quote:

Nathan Cullen, the NDP’s democratic reform critic, says membership on the promised committee should include all parties that won seats in the House of Commons in last October’s election and be proportional to each party’s share of the popular vote.

That would mean five Liberal MPs, three Conservatives, two New Democrats, one Bloc Quebecois and one Green party member.

This assumes Trudeau's electoral reform initiative is designed to recommend a fully proportional voting system. If anyone is under this impression, they have either been lied to or they are delusional.

The fact is, the NDP is in no position to demand anything. If they would've won the election they would've rammed MMP down the throats of Canadians with no Parliamentary committee. (Not that they had any chance of winning.)

I hate all the partisan politics the NDP is playing with the issue of electoral reform. They are MMP or nothing and teaming up with FPTP supporters to take all other options of the table. Which is to say these idiots are doing everything to throw a monkey wrench in the fragile process.

If the NDP fuck this up, I'm going to become a card-carrying Liberal and enjoy the rest of my days watching Dippers get savaged election after election waiting for a revolution that will never come.

BTW, Justin Trudeau put electoral reform on the map. Not Dippers or Fair Vote Canada. Before Trudeau, the media never talked about ER. After, they will just say Canada settled the issue, once and for all, back when Trudeau was PM.  

mark_alfred

But White Cat, you're not seeing the overall strategy of how the NDP's proposal helps the Liberals.  As described in the article:

Quote:
Cullen’s proposal could help inoculate Trudeau against the Conservative charge that he wants to rig the electoral system to ensure Liberal victories in perpetuity.

http://ipolitics.ca/2016/02/04/ndp-urges-government-to-cede-majority-con...

White Cat White Cat's picture

mark_alfred wrote:

Hmm.  Seems Liberals are looking to their allies in the Senate for an out now.

http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/electoral-reform-constitutional-change-1...

There are many outs the Liberals can take to extricate themselves from their electoral reform promise.

Given all the nonsense they have to put up with from PR fanatics and hypocritical partisans, I will be astonished if they don't end up washing their hands of the whole bloody mess.

I hate not living in a democracy. But it's just politics. NDP and Green partisans who waste their lives on politics will be hurt the most when this process goes south. But then again, they are probably too senseless to be able to realize they screwed up their one and only shot at bringing democracy to Canada.

Liberal partisans, on the other hand, will continue to enjoy being members of Canada's natural governing party. All they have to do to get the voting system that benefits them the most: nothing. 

White Cat White Cat's picture

mark_alfred wrote:

But White Cat, you're not seeing the overall strategy of how the NDP's proposal helps the Liberals.  As described in the article:

Quote:
Cullen’s proposal could help inoculate Trudeau against the Conservative charge that he wants to rig the electoral system to ensure Liberal victories in perpetuity.

http://ipolitics.ca/2016/02/04/ndp-urges-government-to-cede-majority-con...

The Cons are opposed to the entire process. There is no need to "inoculate" against any bullshit they are going to spew.

There is no way to rig the electoral system to ensure Liberals rule in perpetuity. This is just politicking nonsense about ranked ballot voting being propagated by Dippers, Greens and PR zealots on the one side and opponents of electoral reform on the other (Cons, establishment Liberals and plutocrats.)

As I've pointed out before, when two groups use the same strategy for opposing goals — one to enact PR and the other to destroy electoral reform — both can't be right. One group are players and the other dupes being played.

Obviously if Liberals believed that ranked ballot voting would perpetuate Liberal government, weasels like Campbell and McGuinty would've legislated RBV instead of killing ER with designed-to-fail referendums. Apparently only Liberals, Cons and plutocrats are capable of putting serious thought into the issue of electoral reform — none of it for the good of Canadians. 

mark_alfred

To legitimize second choices as a valid vote at the expense of not having a better representation of people's first choice pick is wrong.  And it will favour the centrist party over the left or right parties.  So Cullen's idea of inoculating the Liberals against accusations of self-interest by them not having majority control over the committee, but rather all parties present in closer proportion to the votes they received from Canadians, is a fabulous idea, IMO.  It would show true sincerity on the part of the Liberals, and certainly make it easier for the public to buy into the outcome of the committee.

White Cat White Cat's picture

Actually, come to think of it, if Trudeau wants an out, Nathan Cullen gave him the perfect one with a proportional committee on electoral reform. With two sides opposed to compromise, and one side hoping to achieve a compromise, this ensures the committee will support no kind of reform with a majority of votes.

So the Liberals will be able to keep FPTP and their promise to make 2015 the last unfair election: they did everything they could but the democratic committee could not achieve a majority consensus. 

This would also be a perfect showcase for why electoral reform is a terrible idea: it produces nothing but gridlock and legislative chaos. (Not at all true. But there are few, if any, honest people involved in this process.)

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