Proportional Representation: Let's make 2015 the last unfair election

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janfromthebruce
Proportional Representation: Let's make 2015 the last unfair election

Fair Vote Canada reveals that proportional representation is not only about FAIRNESS but also about SOUND ECONOMIC POLICY

Research:

What does making every vote count have to do with economic stability, fiscal responsibility, and prosperity? In addition to delivering fair, representative election results, the research shows that proportional representation outperforms winner-take-all systems on measures of democracy, quality of life, income equality, environmental performance, and economic growth.

Fair Vote Canada reveals that proportional representation is not only about FAIRNESS but also about WOMEN'S EQUALITY

Research:

In his landmark study – Patterns of Democracy – Lijphart compared 36 democracies over 29 years, and found that in countries using proportional systems elected women to parliament 8% more than majoritarian (fptp) systems. He has stated that “the representation of women in parliaments and cabinets is an important measure of the quality of democratic representation in their own right, and it can also serve as an indirect proxy of how well minorities are represented generally.”

Fair Vote Canada reveals that proportional representation is not only about FAIRNESS but also about fighting CLIMATE CHANGE

Research: 

A strong majority of Canadians want to see federal government action on climate change. But thanks to our winner-take-all voting system, just 39% of the vote yields a “false majority” government which fails to reflect our priorities, and a divisive and adversarial political culture.

Meanwhile, countries with proportional systems:

  • are responsible for a shrinking share of world carbon emissions (Darcy Cohen, 2010)
  • more quickly ratified the Kyoto protocol (Darcy Cohen, 2010)
  • score six points higher on Yale University’s Environmental Performance Index, designed to supplement the environmental targets set forth in the United Nations Millennium Development Goals. The index measures ten policy areas, including environmental health, air quality, resource management, biodiversity and habitat, forestry, fisheries, agriculture and climate change. (Arend Lijphart, 2012)

Fair Vote Canada reveals that proportional representation is not only about FAIRNESS but also about greater INCOME EQUALITY

Research:

Income inequality in Canada is growing at an alarming rate. The gap between the richest 1% of Canadians and the rest is at its highest level since the 1920′s. The richest 20% are the only group to have increased their share of the national income – the shares of middle or low income earners in Canada have been stagnant or declined. Canada ranks poorly compared to many other OECD countries, and in the past two decades income inequality has grown faster here in than in any other OECD country except the United States.

Research is clear: proportional representation is strongly correlated with lower levels of income inequality. In fact, researchers have found that as proportionality in an electoral system increases, income inequality decreases. Winner-take-all systems have been found to have the opposite effect. In short, when our votes count, people have more power.

As stated by Hugh Segal,

First past the post [and its bastards such as Alternate Vote] alters, dilutes, frustrates and often negates how people actually voted. economic policy based even in part on this distortion cannot but be distorted itself. Proportional representation is the only way to set this right.

To end:

In Mixed-Member Proportional (MMP) systems like they have in Scotland, Wales, Germany, and New Zealand, voters vote for their individual local representatives the way we do, but also cast a separate second vote to elect “top-up” regional MPs. In the “open list” version recommended by the Law Commission of Canada, the top regional vote-getters from underrepresented parties fill top-up seats until those parties’ share of seats reflects their share of the popular vote.

 

Regions: 
Brachina

 Hugh Segal was wasted on the Tories and Senate.

janfromthebruce

Brachina wrote:

 Hugh Segal was wasted on the Tories and Senate.

Agree. Segal was most definitely what one would call a red tory of a bygone era.

Political views

Segal espouses a moderate brand of conservatism that has little in common with British Thatcherism or US neoconservatism. He is a Red Tory in the tradition of Benjamin Disraeli, Sir John A. Macdonald, John George Diefenbaker and his mentors Robert Stanfield and Bill Davis. This political philosophy stresses the common good and promotes social harmony between classes. It is often associated with One Nation Conservatism. The focus is on order, good government and mutual responsibility. Individual rights and personal freedom are not considered absolute. In his book Beyond Greed: A Traditional Conservative Confronts Neo-Conservative Excess (Toronto: Stoddart, 1997), Segal sought to distinguish what he called “traditional” conservatives from neo-conservatives, notably those in the United States.

In an earlier book, his 1996 memoir No Surrender (page 225), Segal wrote: "Progressive Conservatives cannot embrace the nihilistic defeatism that masquerades as a neo-conservative polemic in support of individual freedom and disengagement." He went on to deplore "American fast-food conservatism." In a speech to the National Press Club on June 21, 1995, Segal referred to the "selfish and directionless nature of the American revolution -- which was more about self-interest, mercantile opportunity, and who collected what tax than it was about tolerance or freedom."

Segal opposed on civil liberties grounds the imposition of the War Measures Act by Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau in the October Crisis of 1970. He favours strengthening Canada's military and encouraging investment, while maintaining a strong social safety net. His 1998 proposal to reduce Canada's Goods and Services Tax from 7% to 6% (and then 5%) was adopted by Stephen Harper and the Conservative Party in 2005.

onlinediscountanvils

I plan on doing my part.

Debater

janfromthebruce wrote:

Brachina wrote:

 Hugh Segal was wasted on the Tories and Senate.

Agree. Segal was most definitely what one would call a red tory of a bygone era.

Yes, and Segal was appointed by Paul Martin.  Not Stephen Harper.

Mr. Magoo

We should at least put the idea to a vote.  That's only fair.

Brachina

 We will, it's called the 2015 general election, if you want PR vote NDP. A referendum is a waste of money and time.

Mr. Magoo

Quote:
We will, it's called the 2015 general election, if you want PR vote NDP.

I'd be voting NDP either way.  But for future reference, this is a promise?

Debater

Ironically, the NDP benefitted from the FPTP system quite well in 2011.  Usually the NDP has lost out in the past.  The way the splits and concentration of vote happened in 2011 worked very nicely for the NDP.

Example 1 - Québec

The NDP actually only got 43% of the vote in Quebec in 2011, yet won 59 of the seats.  That is a much lower percentage of the popular vote compared to the BQ in 1993 & 2004 when they got about 49% on both occasions and yet only 54 seats.  The 43% of the vote that Layton got is also slightly lower than the 44% that Chrétien got in 2000 when he won only 38 seats.

The 59th seat that the NDP won in Québec in Riviere-Du-Loup over a CPC MP was only by about 5 votes and went to a re-count.  Not surpisingly, that former CPC MP, Bérnard Génereux, is apparently running again for the CPC to have a shot at taking the seat back.  But it's an interesting example of how FPTP worked nicely for the NDP in 2011.

Example 2 - Ontario

The NDP ended up winning about 10 more seats in Ontario in 2011 than the Liberals despite the fact that both parties got about 25% of the vote.  But because the Liberals narrowly lost a lot of seats by just a handful of votes (Etobicoke Centre by 25 votes, Nipissing-Timiskaming by 18 votes, etc.) the splits worked against the Libs and the LPC only won 11 seats compared to the NDP's 22.

Geoff

It's too bad the NDP didn't implement PR in Manitoba where they have governed since 1999.  Had they done so, it would have added to the federal party's credibility in making the case for PR today.  Ah well, hope rings eternal. 

janfromthebruce

Mr. Magoo wrote:

Quote:
We will, it's called the 2015 general election, if you want PR vote NDP.

I'd be voting NDP either way.  But for future reference, this is a promise?

It's NDP policy. In previous federal elections but especially in 2011, it was front and centre in campaign literature, and Jack Layton spoke to it in the debates.

And the NDP recently put a private motion forward in the HoCs on proportional representation supported by all NDP, 16 Liberals, independents. Trudeau voted against it.

The motion read as follows:

That, in the opinion of the House: (a) the next federal election should be the last conducted under the current first-past-the-post electoral system which has repeatedly delivered a majority of seats to parties supported by a minority of voters, or under any other winner-take-all electoral system; and (b) a form of mixed-member proportional representation would be the best electoral system for Canada.

The case for mixed-member proportional representation

NDP MP Craig Scott explains his party’s position

Mulcair Promises Proportional Representation If NDP Wins Next Election

thorin_bane

So 30.63 % of the vote and getting 33.44% of the seats is super undemocratic is it? How about when the PCs has 16% of the vote and 2 seats in 1993? was that very democractic? How about we move to a system that has representation that is proportionate to the people who vote for the parties(very close to what the NDP actually got last time around in case you aren't looking at the numbers)

KeyStone

Democratic reform is needed but I can't support any system that gives more power to the political parties.

Given how deeply flawed the process is to become leader of the party, and given that the leaders generally surround themselves with a braintrust of non-elected individuals, I don't particularly care for these same individuals drawing up a list of party hacks, old friends, and quasi-celebrities from which to allocate the votes to.

The political parties already have far too much power. Just look at Kathleen Wynne tossing a disabled man aside, so she can insert her formerly NDP candidate. Is that because the disabled are so overrepresented in government.

 

Also, the data is faulty and assumes a causal relationship. The fact is, progresssive nations are more likely to adopt electoral reform, and are also more likely to have more equitable systems.

 

radiorahim radiorahim's picture

Probably the biggest "scandal" of FPTP was the New Brunswick provincial election of 1987 where the Liberals under Frank McKenna won 60% of the vote and 100% of the seats.

In PEI there have been a number of elections where the opposition party won only 1 seat despite winning 35-42% of the vote.

2003 Liberal 42.6% of the vote and 1 of 27 seats

1996 PC's 35.8% of the vote and 1 of 32 seats

1993 PC's 39.5% of the vote and 1 of 32 seats

I don't know how anyone can call this democratic.

I'm not in favour of a referendum on proportional representation.    Governments are in the habit of sabotaging them.

 

janfromthebruce

radiorahim wrote:

Probably the biggest "scandal" of FPTP was the New Brunswick provincial election of 1987 where the Liberals under Frank McKenna won 60% of the vote and 100% of the seats.

In PEI there have been a number of elections where the opposition party won only 1 seat despite winning 35-42% of the vote.

2003 Liberal 42.6% of the vote and 1 of 27 seats

1996 PC's 35.8% of the vote and 1 of 32 seats

1993 PC's 39.5% of the vote and 1 of 32 seats

I don't know how anyone can call this democratic.

I'm not in favour of a referendum on proportional representation.    Governments are in the habit of sabotaging them.

 

Agree with you here. Similar to what happens in B.C. which completely distorts the actual outcomes.

Malcontent

In Sask last time the NDP received 32.9% of the vote and no seats...

 

I sure hiope we get a party in that will bring in pro rep but I do not think the NDP will win but if the Libs get a minority or even the cons maybe they can force the issue?

addictedtomyipod

KeyStone wrote:

 

The political parties already have far too much power. Just look at Kathleen Wynne tossing a disabled man aside, so she can insert her formerly NDP candidate. Is that because the disabled are so overrepresented in government.

 

 

 

 

The voters of Sudbury have spoken, and they approve of this behaviour.

radiorahim radiorahim's picture

Quote:
In Sask last time the NDP received 32.9% of the vote and no seats...

It's certainly not fair to win 0 of 14 Saskatchewan seats in the last federal election, but at least other parties managed to win seats representing those views in other parts of the country.

The really dangerous situation of FPTP is New Brunswick where a government had no opposition party representation at all in the legislature and therefore no one to hold them to account.

Mr. Magoo

Quote:
It's NDP policy.

Is it policy solely at the Federal level?

NorthReport

Magoo,

In BC its BC NDP policy only after they get elected and then they will have a refrendum on the issue in other words the BC NDP is not really in favout of PR.

FPTP has kept right-wing Liberals and Conservatives in power pretty much since confederation in 1867, so don't look for them to support it. Both Liberals and cons have government track records - if they were in favour of a fair system we would have one decades ago.

What radiorahim said upthread.

Mr. Magoo wrote:

Quote:
It's NDP policy.

Is it policy solely at the Federal level?

Centrist

NorthReport wrote:
In BC its BC NDP policy only after they get elected and then they will have a refrendum on the issue in other words the BC NDP is not really in favout of PR.

FPTP has kept right-wing Liberals and Conservatives in power pretty much since confederation in 1867, so don't look for them to support it.

True. BC NDP came out with that policy a few weeks ago in terms of PR. Actually MMP. But they don't know what type of MMP yet. Vaughn Palmer had a good column about same last week:

http://www.vancouversun.com/news/Vaughn+Palmer+proposes+proportional+rep...

Bill Tieleman has already come out against it. Of course.

I actually doubt that MMP will pass in a referendum in BC esp. after the 2 failed PR STV referendums. The "No" side will argue this:

1. MMP will mean a cut in constituences by ~50%, which would double the size of constituences in interior BC, rural BC, suburban BC. These voters will no doubt be against larger constituencies; (with the other 50% comprising list MLAs)

2. A 3% - 5% threshold could mean some fringe, populist, pro-separatist party, for example, could come out of nowhere and enter the legislature;

And on and on.

Hypothetically, if MMP did pass in BC, that could also be dangerous for the BC NDP. IOW:

1. The 1972 Dave Barrett/BC NDP victory at 39% would not have been. More likely a Lib or PC minority gov't with Socred support;

2. The 1991 Mike Harcourt/BC NDP gov't at 41% would not have been. More likely a Lib minority with Socred support;

3. The 1996 Glen Clark gov't at 39% would not have been. More likely a Lib minority with Reform support;

Even the recent 2013 BC election would have seen a Lib minority with BC Con support. These gov'ts may have been even more right-wing than under FPTP. 

And it gets even worse. Prior to 1972, the CCF/NDP received between 27% and 33% lof the popular vote share in a BC election. Only in '72 did a chunk of the then BC Lib popular support (typically 20% prior to '72) move over to the BC NDP to oust the Socreds and that vote stayed there. Not necessary pro-NDP voters but anti gov't/anti right-wing Socred voters.

With MMP in BC, I can see some folk start-up a new federal Lib type party in BC (perhaps called "Liberal Democrats"?) And that would drain popular vote share from the BC NDP. So would the BC Green Party.

So we would have:

1. BC Libs;

2. BC Liberal Democrats;

3. BC Greens;

4. BC NDP;

5. BC Cons;

I could see either BC Lib/BC Con gov'ts or BC LD/BC Green gov'ts in perpetuity here in BC with the BC NDP left out in the cold. And that would be dangerous politically. The proverbial "Catch-22" of BC MMP.

NorthReport

Agreed, just depends on which kind of PR works best. Nothing is perfect but which will be the fairest is paramont.

Centrist's comments in the previous post about BC, the only province that has actually even had a referendum (although the bar was set so high, 60%, that it was doomed to failure) about the issue, are worth a read. 

Brachina wrote:

 We will, it's called the 2015 general election, if you want PR vote NDP. A referendum is a waste of money and time.

onlinediscountanvils

NorthReport wrote:

BC, the only province [west of Kenora] that has actually even had a referendum

FTFY

*waves to Ontario and P.E.I.*

NorthReport

Should have posted that had the slightest chance of passing.

Suppose I prefer to discuss things that are relevant, eh!

onlinediscountanvils wrote:

NorthReport wrote:

BC, the only province [west of Kenora] that has actually even had a referendum

FTFY

*waves to Ontario and P.E.I.*

onlinediscountanvils

NorthReport wrote:

Should have posted that had the slightest chance of passing.

NorthReport wrote:

BC, the only province that has actually even had a referendum (although the bar was set so high, 60%, that it was doomed to failure)

NorthReport wrote:

Suppose I prefer to discuss things that are relevant, eh!

Sorry, that's not something I feel I can suppose, although I wish you the greatest of success with that.

Mr. Magoo

Quote:
Should have posted that had the slightest chance of passing.

Read: "I meant no TRUE Scotsman!"

montrealer58 montrealer58's picture

1. Define Party Status based on 5% of the vote and 3 seats.

2. Have Commons elections based on MPs getting 50% + 1 of the vote, and a runoff of the top two if there is no majority the first time.

3. Turn the Senate into pure PR, and arranged so that people could vote for 1 person for each Party. Seats would be allocated per percentage of the vote received, and candidates would be selected based on the number of votes they got. It would be arranged so people would be voting for candidates with a regular ballot such as we are used to. The Parties would have to run worthy people.

You would get at least 38% more democracy than we have now. Harper would never have got into government.

clambake

I like the prospect of a federal socialist party gaining party status and the NDP needing them to form government under PR. You may say i'm a dreamer...

Mr. Magoo

Quote:
Should have posted that had the slightest chance of passing.

Any referendum on a topic that's (allegedly) important should have some chance of passing, shouldn't it??

That seems to be the paradox of the fight for PR in Canada.

1.  "Voters are disenfranchised!  They're sick of seeing their votes count for nothing, and they want CHANGE!!"

2.  "Sure, it was put to a referendum, but how were voters even supposed to know what they were voting on??  People were confused and unable to spend five minutes on Google so they voted against CHANGE!"

Michael Moriarity Michael Moriarity's picture

clambake wrote:
I like the prospect of a federal socialist party gaining party status and the NDP needing them to form government under PR. You may say i'm a dreamer...

But you're not the only one...

Debater

thorin_bane wrote:

So 30.63 % of the vote and getting 33.44% of the seats is super undemocratic is it?

Yes, it's true that the National NDP number closely matched their seat percentage.

However, as I stated above, the NDP received a very disproportionate number of the seats in Quebec, and a somewhat disproportionate share of the seats in Ontario.

So while the overall National number was representative, regionally it was quite distorted.

But that's part of the crap shoot of the FPTP system.

Gary Shaul Gary Shaul's picture

While the PCs did get only 2 seats in 1993, we should keep in mind that the party was splintered with the break-away Bloc Quebecois and far-right Reform (CRAPP) Party wich both won quite a few seats Most "Red Tories" have not been supporters of PR. Segal is probably the exception. There were likely more prominent Reformers like Manning, Rick Anderson and even Harper for a while. 

We should also no undervalue the significance of the 16 Liberal MPs voting for the NDP's Craig Scott's MMP bill in December. Had they been less prescriptive, they would have likely had even more. What's most important is that the vital debate that needs to happen within the Liberal Party about PR is underway despite Trudeau's wishes that te issue go away. Pro-PR Liberals have to keep up the pressure before - and depending on the outcome - after the October election. 

After 4 pretty much rigged Liberal referenda on PR, it's pretty clear that - and I applaud for the NDP for saying so - the next election itself should be the referendum. 

NorthReport

As I said the Liberals and Conservatives basically have maintained their hold on power in Ottawa since Confderation  due to the unfairness in our voting ststem, so don't expect those Liberals and the Conservatives who profit from the unfairness to make things right.

Debater

Gary Shaul wrote:

We should also no undervalue the significance of the 16 Liberal MPs voting for the NDP's Craig Scott's MMP bill in December. Had they been less prescriptive, they would have likely had even more. What's most important is that the vital debate that needs to happen within the Liberal Party about PR is underway despite Trudeau's wishes that te issue go away. Pro-PR Liberals have to keep up the pressure before - and depending on the outcome - after the October election. 

Do you give credit to Justin Trudeau for giving his MP's a free vote on this subject?  And for the fact that nearly half of the Liberal caucus voted for the NDP bill?

Jacob Two-Two

Debater wrote:

thorin_bane wrote:

So 30.63 % of the vote and getting 33.44% of the seats is super undemocratic is it?

Yes, it's true that the National NDP number closely matched their seat percentage.

However, as I stated above, the NDP received a very disproportionate number of the seats in Quebec, and a somewhat disproportionate share of the seats in Ontario.

So while the overall National number was representative, regionally it was quite distorted.

But that's part of the crap shoot of the FPTP system.

Then it was an improvement over most elections, which are disorted both regionally and nationally.

JKR

Recently representatives of the NDP, LPC, and GPC, participated in a webinar arranged by Fair Vote Canada. Here it is:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8cTk3X85he8

It's nice to see the NDP, LPC, and GPC, cooperate with each other to improve our democracy. Unfortunately the CPC were not represented at this event.

JKR

According to Stephen Maher in the National Post, the Alberta NDP quietly dropped p.r. from their platform in February.

http://tinyurl.com/ookjyuo

Quote:

But the Alberta NDP supports PR. The party ran on it in the last election, and in January, its platform, which is still cached online, was still promising that an NDP government would “set up a system of proportional representation.”

In February, they quietly dropped that sentence, and they did not campaign on PR.

Federal NDP MP Craig Scott, who is pushing a sensible and detailed PR proposal, will nudge Notley to move, but she knows that if she puts PR in place, she will never get another majority.

This is why we don’t have proportional representation.

Although it is clearly superior to the first-past-the-post system, it is worse for governing parties, and only their votes count.

Brachina

 The Alberta NDP was no where near a majority government in feberary, I don't know if the Alberta NDP still supports it or not, only Notley knows the answer.

Brachina

 The Alberta NDP was no where near a majority government in feberary, I don't know if the Alberta NDP still supports it or not, only Notley knows the answer.

Wilf Day

JKR wrote:

According to Stephen Maher in the National Post, the Alberta NDP quietly dropped p.r. from their platform in February.

 

http://tinyurl.com/ookjyuo

Quote:

But the Alberta NDP supports PR. The party ran on it in the last election, and in January, its platform, which is still cached online, was still promising that an NDP government would “set up a system of proportional representation.”

In February, they quietly dropped that sentence, and they did not campaign on PR.

Federal NDP MP Craig Scott, who is pushing a sensible and detailed PR proposal, will nudge Notley to move, but she knows that if she puts PR in place, she will never get another majority.

This is why we don’t have proportional representation.

Although it is clearly superior to the first-past-the-post system, it is worse for governing parties, and only their votes count.

It's still ANDP Policy. Lots of people saw it online, and more recently than February. Currently their whole platform is offline. But we can ask them to carry out policy.

Are we asking them to adopt a system under which they would have lost the election? No. More voters will vote if they have more choices. The breakdown of the votes cast would likely be quite different too. Adding that factor in, I think an NDP-Liberal-Alberta Party coalition government would have held 47 seats under PR, more than the alternative PC/Wildrose coalition with 40.
http://wilfday.blogspot.ca/2015/05/how-would-proportional-representation...

Mr. Magoo wrote:

Quote:
It's NDP policy.

Is it policy solely at the Federal level?

Ontario has the same policy as the federal level. BC and Alberta also have it in their policy. Maybe New Brunswick. PEI used to support it, and I assume still does. Saskatchewan adopted it in 2006 but has been silent more recently. Manitoba and Nova Scotia have never supported it. I don't know about Newfoundland and Labrador.  

Debater wrote:

Do you give credit to Justin Trudeau for giving his MP's a free vote on this subject?  And for the fact that nearly half of the Liberal caucus voted for the NDP bill?

Yes. More and more Liberal candidates are supporting PR. We have to keep up the pressure.

NorthReport

WR & PC got 52% of the vote

Glenl

If a government can bring in PR without a referendum then another government can take it out just as easy.

Wilf Day

NorthReport wrote:

WR & PC got 52% of the vote

Indeed. That's why I spent three days working on the calculations and facts in this blog post.

JKR

Glenl wrote:
If a government can bring in PR without a referendum then another government can take it out just as easy.

If p.r. is brought in, then coalition government will likely become the new norm and this in turn would make it difficult to remove p.r. Once a p.r. system is established it is difficult to remove because some of the smaller parties that participate within coalition governments greatly benefit from p.r. The smaller parties that make up coalition governments elected through p.r. usually require the continuance of p.r. in order to continue to remain viable. In this way p.r. is part of Canada's movement to a multi-party system.

Left Turn Left Turn's picture

JKR wrote:
According to Stephen Maher in the National Post, the Alberta NDP quietly dropped p.r. from their platform in February.

 

http://tinyurl.com/ookjyuo

Quote:

But the Alberta NDP supports PR. The party ran on it in the last election, and in January, its platform, which is still cached online, was still promising that an NDP government would “set up a system of proportional representation.”

In February, they quietly dropped that sentence, and they did not campaign on PR.

Federal NDP MP Craig Scott, who is pushing a sensible and detailed PR proposal, will nudge Notley to move, but she knows that if she puts PR in place, she will never get another majority.

This is why we don’t have proportional representation.

Although it is clearly superior to the first-past-the-post system, it is worse for governing parties, and only their votes count.

Honest Question: if parties wanting to be able to get phony-majority governments is the reason we don'y have PR, then how did all the countries other than the US, UK, and Canada get PR?

Brachina

Most started off with PR.

Glenl

JKR wrote:
Glenl wrote:
If a government can bring in PR without a referendum then another government can take it out just as easy.

If p.r. is brought in, then coalition government will likely become the new norm and this in turn would make it difficult to remove p.r. Once a p.r. system is established it is difficult to remove because some of the smaller parties that participate within coalition governments greatly benefit from p.r. The smaller parties that make up coalition governments elected through p.r. usually require the continuance of p.r. in order to continue to remain viable. In this way p.r. is part of Canada's movement to a multi-party system.

It only takes one landslide coalition to change it back. There will be many smaller parties that will actually form part of one ideology, both left and right. With current election financing rules you may end up with a lot of mini me Comservative parties, they can afford it.

montrealer58 montrealer58's picture

What is wrong with runoffs or STV? I'd prefer a clear majority every time.

JKR

Glenl wrote:
JKR wrote:
Glenl wrote:
If a government can bring in PR without a referendum then another government can take it out just as easy.

If p.r. is brought in, then coalition government will likely become the new norm and this in turn would make it difficult to remove p.r. Once a p.r. system is established it is difficult to remove because some of the smaller parties that participate within coalition governments greatly benefit from p.r. The smaller parties that make up coalition governments elected through p.r. usually require the continuance of p.r. in order to continue to remain viable. In this way p.r. is part of Canada's movement to a multi-party system.

It only takes one landslide coalition to change it back. There will be many smaller parties that will actually form part of one ideology, both left and right. With current election financing rules you may end up with a lot of mini me Comservative parties, they can afford it.

With p.r. the right would likely split into more parties and these smaller parties would not want to get rid of p.r. but rather they would want to form coalition governments with like minded parties. Social conservatives would likely want their own party immediately as many are not that happy with the status quo.

JKR

montrealer58 wrote:

What is wrong with runoffs or STV? I'd prefer a clear majority every time.

STV is a proportional system that uses preferential voting in multi-member constituencies. STV would also tend to produce multi-party coalition governments. I think you are confusing STV with instant runoff voting, sometimes called the alternative vote, that uses preferential voting in single-member constituencies. It is a majoritarian system. It's used to elect the House of Representatives in Australia. STV is used to elect the Senate in Australia.

For people who prefer majoritarian multi-party politics, single-seat runoff voting makes more sense than FPTP because it deals with the problem of vote splitting. FPTP works optimally for two-party politics. The weakness of runoff voting in single member constituencies is that it tends to give representation to only two parties. Its strength is that it does not pressure smaller parties to limit themselves or terminate themselves due to vote splitting. The LPC seems to favour single-member runoff voting as it would still be majoritarian but it would also deal with our current level of multi-party politics.

montrealer58 montrealer58's picture

I think I heard an Australian define his system as STV, as it is a single vote and it is transferrable. But, an "instant runoff" or putting in your preferences so a single candidate in each constituency can wind up with 50%+1 might be understandable.

If we don't understand it however, the answer is automatically no.

FPTP is very easy to understand.

If the LPC gets a majority government under FPTP you won't hear anything about electoral reform. When their seat count drops below their percentage count, they will be squealing like the little entitled piggies at the trough they are. That you can bet on.

The main problem for the Canadian Liberal Party is relevance. Their time is fading away.  The Liberals will be a part of Canadian history like Vimy Ridge. It will be a heritage moment to think of the Liberals. A once great party which sold out all its principles and committed suicide by voting for C-51.

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