#ERRE #Q Meetings & Transcripts

Ahead to Take The Poll ~ #ERRE #Qback to #ERRE #Q CommitteeCanadians Deserve Better -Proportional Representation - on Canadian Flag backgroundThis is the fourteenth in the Whoa!Canada: Proportional Representation Series

The Special Committee on Electoral Reform has been meeting since June 21st, 2016 and we are fortunate to live in a time when such proceedings can be televised to allow citizens to follow along as they happen.  Better yet, these sessions are also available online, making it possible for us to watch as it happens, or later at our leisure.

The First Batch of ERRE Special Committee on Electoral Reform Committee Meetings is over.  You can watch the video or read the transcripts online.

[update: I’ve just discovered where the expert witness submission briefs are posted. They are grouped together with submissions being made by Canadians who will not be appearing.  I’ve added links to the witness briefs below, but I recommend you check out those made by non-witnesses, too.]

MEETING 1

Tuesday, June 21, 2016Minutes ~ Evidence Transcript
Election of Chair, Vice Chairs and Administrative BusinessMonsef

Listen on ParVu

MEETING 2

Wednesday, June 29, 2016Minutes
Establishing the ground rules for the Committee
Proposed ERRE Committee Meetings: July 6, 7, 25, 26, 27, 28; August 22, 23, 29, 30, 31; September 1st.

MEETING 3

Wednesday July 6th, 2016 ~ Minutes ~ Evidence Transcript
• Hon. Maryam Monsef, P.C., M.P., Minister of Democratic Institutions  • Testimony Transcript
• Isabelle Mondou, Assistant Secretary to the Cabinet and Counsel to the Clerk of the Privy Council  • Testimony Transcript
Watch on ParlVu http://www.parl.gc.ca/Committees/en/Redirects/ParlVuMeetingPage?MeetingId=9012450&meetingDate=2016-07-06&isAudioOnly=false
Watch on CPAC

CPAC: Post Meeting interview with Democratic Institutions Minister Maryam Monsef

MEETING 4

Thursday, July 7, 2016 ~ MinutesEvidence Transcript
• Marc Mayrand, Chief Electoral Officer  • Testimony Transcript
• Stéphane Perrault, Deputy Chief Electoral Officer, Regulatory Affairs  • Testimony Transcript
• Michel Roussel, Deputy Chief Electoral Officer, Electoral Events  • Testimony Transcript • #ERRE #Q Parliament

Watch on ParlVu 
Watch on CPAC

Post Meeting Interview on CPAC: Mayrand Discusses Voting Reform, Possible Referendum

MEETING 5

Thursday, July 7, 2016 ~ Minutes ~ Evidence Transcript
• Jean-Pierre Kingsley, Chief Electoral Officer, 1990-2007  • Testimony Transcript

Watch on ParlVu 
Watch on CPAC

MEETING 6

Monday, July 25, 2016 ~ Minutes ~ Evidence Transcript
• R. Kenneth Carty
, Professor Emeritus, The University of British Columbia  • Testimony Transcript • 
• Brian Tanguay
, Professor, Political Science, Wilfrid Laurier University  • Testimony Transcript • 
• Nelson Wiseman
, Director, Canadian Studies Program, Professor, Department of Political Science, University of Toronto  • Testimony Transcript

Watch on ParlVu 
Watch on CPAC

MEETING 7

Tuesday, July 26, 2016 ~ 9:30am  ~ Minutes ~ Evidence Transcript
• Michael Marsh, Emeritus Professor, Trinity College Dublin (by videoconference)  • Testimony Transcript
• Michael Gallagher, Professor of Comparative Politics, Trinity College Dublin (by videoconference)  • Testimony Transcript
~ Submission Brief

Watch on ParlVu 
Watch on CPAC

MEETING 8

Tuesday, July 26, 2016 ~ 2:00pm ~ Minutes ~ Evidence Transcript
• Patrice Dutil, Professor, Ryerson University  • Testimony Transcript
Peter Russell, Professor Emeritus, Department of Political Science, University of Toronto ~ Submission Brief  • Testimony Transcript • 

Watch on ParlVu
Watch on CPAC

MEETING 9

Tuesday, July 26, 2016 ~ 7:00pm ~ Minutes ~ Evidence Transcript
• Tom Rogers, Electoral Commissioner, Australian Electoral Commission (by videoconference)  • Testimony Transcript
• Robert Peden, Chief Electoral Officer (by videoconference) New Zealand Electoral Commission ~ Submission Brief  • Testimony Transcript • 

Watch on ParlVu
Watch on CPAC

MEETING 10

Wednesday, July 27, 2016 ~ 9:30am ~ Minutes ~ Evidence Transcript
 Henry Milner, Senior Researcher, Chair in Electoral Studies, Université de Montréal ~ Submission Brief  • Testimony Transcript • 
• Alex Himelfarb, Clerk of the Privy Council, 2002-2006  • Testimony Transcript
• André Blais, Professor, Department of Political Science, Université de Montréal  • Testimony Transcript

Watch on ParlVu 
Watch on CPAC

MEETING 11

Expert Witness Dennis Pilon appeared before the ERRE Committee

Wednesday, July 27, 2016 ~ 2pm ~ Minutes ~ Evidence Transcript
• Leslie Seidle, Research Director, Canada’s Changing Federal Community, Institute for Research on Public Policy  • Testimony Transcript
• Larry LeDuc, Professor Emeritus, University of Toronto  ~ Submission Brief  • Testimony Transcript • 
• Hugo Cyr, Dean, Faculty of Political Science and Law, Université du Québec à Montréal ~ Submission Brief  • Testimony Transcript • 

Watch on ParlVu 
Watch on CPAC

MEETING 12

Thursday, July 28, 2016 ~ Minutes ~ Evidence Transcript
• Dennis Pilon, Associate Professor, Department of Political Science, York University ~ Submission Brief  • Testimony Transcript • 
• Jonathan Rose, Associate Professor, Department of Policital Studies, Queen’s University  • Testimony Transcript
• Maryantonett Flumian, President, Institute on Governance  • Testimony Transcript • 

Watch on ParlVu 
Watch on CPAC

MEETING 13

Monday, August 22, 2016 ~ 2pm ~ Minutes ~ Evidence Transcript
 Benoît Pelletier, Full Professor, Faculty of Law, University of Ottawa  • Testimony Transcript
• Arend Lijphart, Research Professor Emeritus of Political Science, University of California, San Diego (by videoconference)  • Testimony Transcript

Watch on ParlVu
Watch on CPAC

MEETING 14

Monday, August 22, 2016 ~ 6pmMinutes ~ Evidence Transcript
• Nathalie Des Rosiers, Dean, Faculty of Law, Civil Law, Ottawa University  • Testimony Transcript
• Christian Dufour, Political scientist, Analyst and Writer ~ Submission Brief  • Testimony Transcript • 
• Harold Jansen, Professor of Political Science, University of Lethbridge  • Testimony Transcript

Watch on ParlVu
Watch on CPAC

MEETING 15

Tuesday, August 23, 2016 ~ 9:30am ~ Minutes ~ Evidence Transcript
• Barry Cooper, Professor, University of Calgary  • Testimony Transcript
• Nicole Goodman, Director, Centre for e-Democracy, Assistant Professor, Munk School of Global Affairs  • Testimony Transcript
• Emmett Macfarlane, Assistant Professor, University of Waterloo ~ Submission Brief 

Watch on ParlVu • Testimony Transcript • 
Watch on CPAC

MEETING 16

Tuesday, August 23, 2016 ~ 2:00 p.m.~ Minutes ~ Evidence Transcript
• Matthew P. Harrington, Professor, Faculty of Law, Université de Montréal  • Testimony Transcript
• Thomas S. Axworthy, Public Policy Chair, Massey College, University of Toronto  • Testimony Transcript
• Pippa Norris, Professor of Government Relations & Laureate Fellow, U of Sydney, McGuire Lecturer in Comparative Politics, Harvard, Director of Electoral Integrity Project (by videoconference)  • Testimony Transcript

Watch on ParlVu
Watch on CPAC

MEETING 17

Monday, August 29th, 2016 ~ 2:00 p.m. ~ Minutes ~ Evidence Transcript
• Ed Broadbent, Chair and Founder, Broadbent Institute ~ Submission Brief  • Testimony Transcript • 
• Jean-Pierre Charbonneau, Minister for Democratic Reform, Government of Quebec (2002-2003)  • Testimony Transcript
• Yasmin Dawood, Associate Professor and Canada Research Chair in Democracy, Constitutionalism, and Electoral Law, Faculty of Law, University of Toronto (by videoconference)  • Testimony Transcript

Watch on ParlVu
Watch on CPAC

MEETING 18

Tuesday, August 30th, 2016 ~ 9:30 a.m. ~ Minutes ~ Evidence Transcript
• Jean-Sébastien Dufresne, President, Mouvement Démocratie Nouvelle  • Testimony Transcript • 
• Eric Maskin, Adams University Professor, Department of Economics, Harvard University ~ Submission Brief  • Testimony Transcript • 
• Peter John Loewen, Director, School of Public Policy and Governance and Associate Professor, Department of Political Science, University of Toronto ~ Submission Brief  • Testimony Transcript • 

Watch on ParlVu
Watch on CPAC

MEETING 19

Tuesday, August 30, 2016 ~ 2:00pm ~ Minutes ~ Evidence Transcript
• Louis Massicotte, Professor, Department of Political Science, Laval University ~ Submission Brief  • Testimony Transcript • 
• Melanee Thomas, Assistant Professor, Department of Political Science, University of Calgary (by videoconference)  • Testimony Transcript
 Katelynn Northam, Campaigner-Electoral Reform, Leadnow.ca  • Testimony Transcript • Submission Brief

Watch on ParlVu
Watch on CPAC

MEETING 20

Wednesday, August 31, 2016 ~ 9:30am ~ Minutes ~ Evidence Transcript
• Joachim Behnke, Professor, Chair, Political Science, Zeppelin University, Germany • Testimony Transcript • (by videoconference)
• Friedrich Pukelsheim, Professor, Institut für Mathematik, Universität Augsburg, Germany • Testimony Transcript • (by videoconference)
Behnke & Pukelsheim Submission Brief 
• Mary Pitcaithly, Convener (by videoconference: Falkirk, UK)  The Electoral Management Board for Scotland  • Testimony Transcript • 
• Andy O’Neill, Head of Electoral Commission, Scotland   • Testimony Transcript • (by videoconference)
~ The Electoral Commission & The Electoral Management Board for Scotland Submission Brief 

Watch on ParlVu
Watch on CPAC

MEETING 21

Wednesday, August 31, 2016 ~ 2:00 pmMinutes ~ Evidence Transcript
• Richard Johnston, Professor, Department of Political Science, The University of British Columbia ~ Submission Brief  • Testimony Transcript • 
• Darrell Bricker, CEO, IPSOS Public Affairs • Testimony Transcript • Submission Brief
 Gordon F. Gibson • Testimony Transcript Submission Brief

Watch on ParlVu
Watch on CPAC

MEETING 22Craig Scott

Wednesday, August 31, 2016 ~ 6:00 pmMinutes ~ Evidence Transcript
• Jane Hilderman, Executive Director, Samara • Testimony Transcript • Submission Brief
• Dominic Vézina, Strategic advisor, Institut du Nouveau Monde • Testimony Transcript •  Submission Brief 
• Taylor Gunn, President, Civix  • Testimony Transcript • Submission Brief

Watch on ParlVu
Watch on CPAC

MEETING 23

Thursday, September 1, 2016 ~9:30 am ~ Minutes ~ Evidence Transcript
• David McLaughlin (deputy minister to the New Brunswick Commission on Legislative Democracy, 2003-2005)  • Testimony Transcript Submission Brief
• Craig Scott, Professor of Law, Osgoode Hall Law School, York University • Testimony TranscriptSubmission Brief
• Graham Fox,  President and Chief Executive Officer, Institute for Research on Public Policy • Testimony Transcript • 

Watch on ParlVu
Watch on CPAC


Additional Coverage:
CPAC: WATCH: NEW ZEALAND GREEN LEADER ON PR


NOTE: The briefs linked in Scribd below are now also published in PDF form on the ERRE site with the exception of Patrice Dutil (July 26) 

It is also possible to read the Expert’s Briefs on scribd.  Please be aware they are offering a one month free offer so you can read anything on the service for a month.  However if you are not planning on paying for a subscription after that point, you should consider downloading the briefs  you might wish to refer back to at a later date.


back to #ERRE #Q Committee

Ahead to Take The Poll ~ #ERRE #Q

Proportional Representation Series So Far:

• Proportional Representation for Canada
• What’s so bad about First Past The Post
• Democracy Primer
• Working for Democracy
• The Popular Vote
• Why Don’t We Have PR Already?
• Stability
• Why No Referendum?
• Electoral System Roundup
• When Canadians Learn about PR with CGP Grey
• Entitlement
• Proportional Representation vs. Alternative Vote
• #ERRÉ #Q Committee
• #ERRÉ #Q Meetings & Transcripts
• Take The Poll ~ #ERRÉ #Q
Proportionality #ERRÉ #Q 
• The Poll’s The Thing 
• DIY Electoral Reform Info Sessions
• What WE Can Do for ERRÉ
• #ERRÉ today and Gone Tomorrow (…er, Friday)
• Redistricting Roulette 
• #ERRÉ submission Deadline TONIGHT!
#ERRÉ Submission by Laurel L. Russwurm
• The Promise: “We will make every vote count” #ERRÉ
FVC: Consultations Provide Strong Mandate for Proportional Representation #ERRÉ
PEI picks Proportional Representation
There is only one way to make every vote count #ERRÉ
Canada is Ready 4 Proportional Representation
Sign the Petition e-616
#ProportionalRepresentation Spin Cycle ~ #ERRÉ
• International Women’s Day 2017 ~ #IWD
• An Open Letter to ERRÉ Committee Liberals

and don’t forget to check out the PR4Canada Resources page!

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Democracy Primer

What’s So Bad About First Past The Post?

Canadians Deserve Better -Proportional Representation - on Canadian Flag backgroundThis is the third in the Whoa!Canada: Proportional Representation Series

Lets start with the basics.

Sometimes human beings are loners, hermits who shun other humans. But that is rare.

Most human beings are social in nature.  We want to be together, to live in proximity to other humans.  We want to play together and we learn to work together.   In order for people to co-exist, human society requires some sort of boundaries. Rules.

Individual humans start out as part of a family unit.  The family unit fits into human society as part of some kind of tribe. In the modern world collections of tribes have come together to form countries. Each nation establishes its character in the style and form of policy and the framework of rules— laws— set down by its government.

There are two basic paths human beings have taken in our approach government.

Authoritarianism

Autocracy, OligarchyTotalitarianism, Dictatorship, Monarchy, Empire, Fascism… there are many different systems in which the government is all powerful and citizens are powerless.  Such governments might choose to treat citizens benevolently.  Or not.  The government decides and the citizens have no choice but to comply.

British Library illuminated medieval manuscript image of King Phillip Coronation

Democracy

Citizens very often prefer to have a say in their own governance, and this can be achieved with a democratic system of government.

According to political scientist Larry Diamond, it consists of four key elements: (a) A political system for choosing and replacing the government through free and fair elections; (b) The active participation of the people, as citizens, in politics and civic life; (c) Protection of the human rights of all citizens, and (d) A rule of law, in which the laws and procedures apply equally to all citizens.[3]

The term originates from the Greek δημοκρατία (dēmokratía) “rule of the people”,[4] which was found from δῆμος (dêmos) “people” and κράτος (krátos) “power” or “rule”, in the 5th century BC to denote the political systems then existing in Greek city-states, notably Athens; the term is an antonym to ἀριστοκρατία (aristokratía) “rule of an elite”.

Wikipedia: Democracy

Democracy draws its power and legitimacy from the support and consent of its citizens.  There are two basic ways of achieving democracy.

Democracy

Direct Democracy

All qualified citizens have the right to represent their own interests in government.  In ancient Greece, each citizen spoke for themselves, making laws by “decree of the plebs” or plebiscite.

plebiscite (noun)

  1. a direct vote of the qualified voters of a state in regard to some important public question.
  2. the vote by which the people of a political unit determine autonomy or affiliation with another country.

In a country where qualified voters number in the millions, the closest we can get to direct democracy is through holding a special plebiscite in which all qualified citizens of a state can vote on an important issue.  As digital technology progresses, there may come a time when all Canadian voters will be both qualified and able to vote electronically on every issue directly. But in today’s world, the closest we come to this is through the difficult and expensive mechanism known as a referendum.

referendum (noun)

  1. the principle or practice of referring measures proposed or passed by a legislative body to the vote of the electorate for approval or rejection.
  2. a measure thus referred.
  3. a vote on such a measure.

Representative Democracy

Since it would be hard to fit millions of people into the Parliament Buildings, like most modern democracies, Canada uses a form of Representative Democracy.  Instead of speaking for ourselves, all qualified citizens have the right to elect a representative we believe will best represent our interests in Parliament.  Although some Canadians wish it were different, referendums are not a feature of the Canadian political system.  In nearly a century and a half, our government has had only three referendums: on prohibition (in 1898), conscription (World War II) and whether to accept the Charlottetown Accord (Constitutional Amendments).  Certainly our choice of voting system was not made through this mechanism.

The procedure by which qualified voters determine who our representative will be is called an electoral system.  The different elements that go together to make up an electoral system determine:

  • the structure of the ballot
  • how votes are cast
  • the way votes are counted, and
  • the criteria needed to win

Although I have been breaking this down for simplicity, there are many ways to design electoral systems.  Most (if not all) of the electoral systems in use around the world are hybrids, as ours here in Canada is.  Our representative democracy is part of a constitutional monarchy; we share England’s monarch. In understanding our options, the most crucial distinction between types of electoral systems comes down to which family they are in.

Representative Democracy can be broken down into two main families: Winner-take-all or Proportional Representation.

Winner-take-all

Just as it sounds, a winner-take-all election is an “all or nothing” proposition.  A election which can only have a single winner necessarily ends up with the single winner getting all the power.

And when elections can only produce a single winner, unless that winner achieved 100% of the votes, there will be losers, too.  The candidate(s) who fails to win loses.  Naturally, the citizens who didn’t vote for winner end up without any representation at all.  They’re losers too.

In Canada we use a winner-take-all single member plurality system better known as First Past The Post.  Although many Canadians believe this system produces majority government it doesn’t.

A majority is defined as 50% + 1.  If there are more than 2 candidates competing for a single seat, with First Past The Post the candidate doesn’t needs to win 50% + 1 ~ s/he just needs to win more votes than any of the others.

Because Canadians aren’t happy with only two political parties, very often we elect MPs with far fewer than 50% of the votes.  In the 2015 Canadian Federal Election, 28.99% of the votes cast were enough to elect Bernard Généreux Member of Parliament for the Montmagny—L’Islet—Kamouraska—Rivière-du-Loup.  That’s a long way from 50% + 1.

But even 50% + 1 can leave as many as 49.9% of voters without representation at all.  That’s why I’ve become a fan of:

Proportional Representation

Vote_iconXProportional Representation isn’t the name of any single electoral system, it is a phrase that describes an electoral outcome where 39% of the vote can’t win 100% of the seats in Parliament.  Proportional Representation ensures 39% of the votes wins 39% of the seats.

Instead of polarizing citizens into winners and losers, a proportional system seeks to elect a government that reflects all citizens, by providing representation to all eligible voters.   More than 90 countries around the world (85% of OECD countries) use some form of Proportional Representation, so there is a great deal of information about how such systems work.

In Canada, over the last decade or so, Ten Canadian Commissions, Assemblies and Reports have recommended proportional representation for Canada.  In addition, Liberal MP Stéphane Dion developed his own P3 system, and later this year the Province of Prince Edward Island will consider adopting another newly devised proportional system, Sean Graham‘s Dual Member Mixed Proportional.

As this series progresses, I’ll look at the different electoral systems that have been or might reasonably be on offer for Canada.  If you aren’t already overwhelmed, I’ve provided links throughout the article so you can find out more detail from the supporting on your own.

And you might be interested in what Craig Scott had to say about Proportional Representation:

The great resource is the grass roots multi-partisan organization that advocates for meaningful Canadian electoral reform: Fair Vote Canada. You can check out their website, but you’ll also find chapters across Canada.  My local is the very active Fair Vote Waterloo Region Chapter.

a horizontal border of red graphic maple leaves

Image Credits:

Medievalart on Tumblr led me to the gorgeous public domain image Detail of a miniature of the coronation ceremonies of Philip (Coronation of King Phillip).   This artwork is part of the Catalogue of Illuminated Manuscripts the British Library generously makes available to the public online.

Found in Wikimedia Commons, Vote icon is an original artwork dedicated to the Public Domain by its creator openclipart.org.

My Families of Electoral Systems mini poster & Democracy Flags are original artwork dedicated to the Public Domain

What’s So Bad About First Past The Post?

Proportional Representation For Canada series so far:

• Proportional Representation for Canada
• What’s so bad about First Past The Post
• Democracy Primer
• Working for Democracy
• The Popular Vote
• Why Don’t We Have PR Already?
• Stability
• Why No Referendum?
• Electoral System Roundup
• When Canadians Learn about PR with CGP Grey
• Entitlement
• Proportional Representation vs. Alternative Vote
• #ERRÉ #Q Committee
• #ERRÉ #Q Meetings & Transcripts
• Take The Poll ~ #ERRÉ #Q
Proportionality #ERRÉ #Q 
• The Poll’s The Thing 
• DIY Electoral Reform Info Sessions
• What WE Can Do for ERRÉ
• #ERRÉ today and Gone Tomorrow (…er, Friday)
• Redistricting Roulette 
• #ERRÉ submission Deadline TONIGHT!
#ERRÉ Submission by Laurel L. Russwurm
• The Promise: “We will make every vote count” #ERRÉ
FVC: Consultations Provide Strong Mandate for Proportional Representation #ERRÉ
PEI picks Proportional Representation
There is only one way to make every vote count #ERRÉ
Canada is Ready 4 Proportional Representation
Sign the Petition e-616
#ProportionalRepresentation Spin Cycle ~ #ERRÉ
• International Women’s Day 2017 ~ #IWD
• An Open Letter to ERRÉ Committee Liberals

and don’t forget to check out the PR4Canada Resources page!

Canadian Mouse Tales

A lot of the people I talk to think the Harper Government is the biggest problem facing Canada. And while I strongly disagree with much of what this government has done, I think that the CPC’s behavior is really just symptom of the real problem: our winner-take-all electoral system.

This is an excellent little story I’d never heard, in a nice little film that I’d never seen.  Canadian actor Kiefer Sutherland introduces this allegory told by his grandfather, here set to animation.  It’s well worth a look because it’s just as pertinent today as it was when Tommy Douglas told it.

[Thanks to Larry Wartels for pointing me to “Mouseland.”]

Craig Scott in Waterloo, 2011
NDP Democracy Critic, Craig Scott

Proportional Representation

With a little help from us, the political parties that are currently shut out of Parliament will commit to the implementation of meaningful electoral reform.

The Green Party has long been committed to Proportional Representation.

The NDP voted to adopt Proportional Representation at their policy convention.  Even better, the party is demonstrating its active commitment to PR as Craig Scott, the NDP Democracy critic stumps for meaningful electoral reform across Canada. Bravo!  (Too bad Ontario’s NDP hasn’t  worked with the LPO to implement open list MMP in Ontario… apparently both parties would rather gift the province to Mr. Hudack)

"Support Resolution 31" ButtonHaving backed Alternative Vote initially, the Liberal Party seemed entrenched in its dismissal of Proportional Representation. Many Liberals have been working to change LPC party policy.  I helped some of my Liberal friends make a film to support their resolution to reopen the electoral reform issue at their policy convention. And sure enough, their resolution 31 passed. While the Liberal Party has not actually committed to Proportional Representation yet, it has opened the door.

When some votes count more than others, but most don’t count at all, it isn’t democratic.  Many of us have tried to push back against the inequitable system with strategical voting.  The problem is that if we vote strategically instead of voting for the candidate we think will best represent us, we will never elect the candidates we want; this makes a farce out of our “democracy.”

But things are changing.  Canadians are starting to see past the status quo propped up by the bulk of our mainstream media.  That’s why Canadians across the country have been calling and writing their MPs, and delivering petitions to let them know Proportional Representation must be on the national agenda.  Even some Conservative MPs are coming to the realization we need to modernize our First Past The Post system because they are discovering for themselves how frustrating it is not to have your voice heard.

Part of the problem we face is that nearly half of Canada’s eligible voters have become disaffected by the gross inequity inherent in our unfair system.    If all the disaffected voters come back to the polls and vote in the next election — no matter who they vote for — all of our fractional votes would combine into enough votes to turn the tide.

Fair Vote Canada tells us that Ten Canadian Commissions, Assemblies and Reports have recommended proportional representation.

And although I expect Tommy Douglas would be pleased to see the NDP as Canada’s Official Opposition, I think he’d be happier still if Canada adopted Proportional Representation, so that the mice and the cats can finally be represented proportionally.

For information about what you can do to help Canada become a real democracy, contact Fair Vote Canada to find the chapter near you.

Democracy Week 2013 Continues

25,000 signatures!

Fair Vote Canada Executive Director Anita Nickerson addresses the crowd in Waterloo Public Square on Monday
Fair Vote Canada Executive Director Anita Nickerson addresses the crowd in Waterloo Public Square on Monday

On September 16th 2013, Fair Vote Canada‘s “Declaration of Voter’s Rights” reached 25,000 signatures!

Fair Vote Canada will be holding a press conference and campaign launch event on Parliament Hill on Thursday, where Executive Director Anita Nickerson will proudly display a giant copy of the Declaration this Thursday ~ September 19th, 2013 ~ on Parliament Hill. Standing alongside FVC will be NDP leader Thomas Mulcair, Stephane Dion (former Liberal Leader), Georges Laraque, Joyce Murray, Paul Dewar, Leadnow, Greenpeace and more! They hope to reach 100,000 signatures by 2015!

Watch the video at Craig Scott on the Principle of Electoral Reform

(editor’s note: I originally had the video embedded, but it was doing weird things so I removed it after the fact,)

My parents were born and raised in Canada, yet they couldn't vote till after WWII because they were of Japanese extraction, so I value the right to vote. I have voted in every federal election since I reached adulthood and have never voted for the party that formed the government. We desperately need Proportional Representation so that a diversity of values and perspectives may be elected." ~David Suzuki
“We desperately need Proportional Representation so that a diversity of values and perspectives may be elected.” ~ David Suzuki