Monday, January 11, 2016
We should change Canada's electoral finance system to require registered federal parties that wish to receive a candidate's election expense subsidy to nominate that candidate democratically, that is, by vote of all their members (or their elected delegates) living in the electoral district or region with valid memberships as of a specified cut-off date.
Proportional representation means fair and unrestricted competition among political parties presenting democratically-nominated candidates. Democracy is at its core, not more power to party elites.
Parties can nominate several candidates at once democratically, in the same way they nominate single candidates: by vote of the membership in the district or region. Depending on local geography, it might be entirely an in-person meeting, or might include online voting.
If a major party finds it necessary in a very rare case to appoint, why should they not be encouraged to follow the German example: if a nomination meeting faced serious problems, call another meeting rather than appoint? Michael Chong’s Reform Act aimed at preventing party leaders from holding the appointment power. Why should parties qualify for election expense rebates for a candidate not democratically nominated?
New parties may need to appoint candidates in ridings where they have no membership, but those will be token candidates spending nothing, and not getting the 10% of the vote required to qualify for rebates of 60% of election expense.
At one time some parties needed to appoint candidates in order to nominate more women, but this is no longer necessary.
Friday, January 8, 2016
No one knows how many voters would use the list option: with a similar choice in Brazil only about 10% do. Yet many PR-sceptics will scream “backroom-dominated party list.” And they will ask a valid question: how many personal votes does it take to move a candidate up the list? The Law Commission left the “personal threshold” detail to be decided.
Sunday, November 29, 2015
The platform also said they would consider ranked ballots. Now, a ranked ballot is not a voting system; it is a ballot, which can be used in many systems. It can be used in proportional voting systems.
I am going to show two examples using a mixed-member system like the Law Commission of Canada recommendation. This is not the NDP model. Liberals know the Law Commission of Canada was an expert impartial Commission that they were proud of (and that the last government abolished). I am using it because it still has local MPs, unlike Stephane Dion's P3 model.
With any mixed-member model your second vote is for a party, and if you want to look at the list of 8 or 10 regional candidates under the party name, you can choose one if you wish. Simple but flexible, as shown in this six-minute video.
Once our voting system respects Canada’s political diversity, it’s all up to the voters to decide, as it shouold be.
Saturday, November 21, 2015
Within the context of a mixed member proportional system, Parliament should adopt a flexible list system that provides voters with the option of either endorsing the party “slate” or “ticket,” or of indicating a preference for a candidate within the list."