Electoral reform, under rug swept

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In the dog-days of summer, a very important issue is brewing with regards to how we elect our leaders. The Governing Liberal Party wants to change how we elect Members of Parliament, potentially switching Canada to a voting system that would be most advantageous to the Liberals keeping themselves in power.

Recent polls show that a majority of Canadians don’t want the Liberals to tell them how to vote – but the Liberal Government continues to dither on whether it will allow us a say, downplaying the issue in hopes it might go away.

Canadians overwhelmingly support  having a referendum on any changes to our voting system. Yet there has been no commitment to allowing us to vote on electoral reform, and zero public consultations have been announced by the Pontiac Liberal MP.

Given the geography of the Pontiac, dozens of town halls would have to be held in order to even minimally consult our various regions without a referendum. Dozens of public consultations do not appear to be forthcoming.

Unfortunately for the Liberal MP here, ignoring this issue will not make it go away. The Pontiac deserves a say on this most critical aspect of democracy.

With our current voting system, the candidate that receives the most votes in a particular riding represents that riding and its residents. Our most recent election featured increased voter turnout, particularly among young people. I am for keeping our current voting system, even though some potential changes to the electoral system would benefit my own party of choice. Others here might want a different voting system, and they too deserve to have their say rather than have the Government force something upon them.

Due to the inherent partisan nature of politics, politicians should not be the unilaterally deciding on fundamental changes to how we vote. Canadians should be deciding on these changes – not politicians! If the Government wants to really hear from Canadians on electoral reform, it should allow us to vote on it.

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