With respect to Tom Fletcher’s column, Waiting for a secret referendum, in the May 9 Saanich News. Well, it’s no secret – both Greens and NDP openly campaigned for a referendum on proportional representation (PR – i.e. 38 per cent of the vote = 38 per cent of the seats). There were no ‘fringe’ parties involved (Greens got one in six votes) and collectively they have strong majority support, something almost always absent in so-called ‘majority’ governments.
The only ‘fix’ that’s in, is with the multi-million dollar corporate funded BC Liberals who have openly state their number one priority was to block any move toward PR. That’s because they like their dictatorial false majorities. How democratic is that? Not!
Fletcher’s fear-mongering is trying to blame all sorts of ills on the current government, including his ridiculous assertion that the high price of gas is due to the recent increment in the carbon tax! It’s once again, corporate spawned misinformation to obscure the facts and get ‘their’ party in power. This just shows critical thinkers what the real agenda is with this kind of misinformation and why the type of voting system matters.
So why are we again looking at PR and why should we support it? PR recognizes the need for reforming our democracy and that there are many different voter viewpoints, all of which deserve to be represented and have a real say in our government. B.C. now has a well-functioning, majority-supported coalition government, which has demonstrated that collaboration, co-operation and communication can lead to more civil discourse and a balance representing all voters’ interests. Proposed PR systems also ensure full representation of rural voters in government. Additionally, PR will result in more stable government, as decisions will be made that are majority supported. Gender balance and minority representation will also improve, as so amply demonstrated in modern world democracies which have adopted PR. Perhaps most importantly for this voter, it will change the tone of politics which currently rewards the hyper-partisan candidates who know all they have to do for power is to get one more vote than the closest rival and that to get in power again, saying anything is allowed.
Pay attention fellow voters and if you don’t want a U.S. style of government and leadership, then support electoral reform and the responsive, representative, collaborative government it will bring. And by all means, don’t wait to get informed. Just be careful whose truth you listen to.