Vote needed on election reform

In 1964, then-Prime Minister Lester Pearson formed a committee to create a new Canadian flag to replace the Red Ensign.
The committee eventually selected an 11-point maple leaf centered on a white background between two red bands on either side.
There was serious and rancorous debate between the parties—and the decision on the new flag ultimately was left to Members of Parliament to vote on.
Just this past month, the government of New Zealand went through a complete exercise to consider a new flag. It was well-debated but the government let the citizens of the country make the final decision through a nation-wide vote.
The population—by a margin of 57-43 percent—chose to stick with their current flag.
One of the pieces of the Liberal election platform was to review the Canadian electoral system with a view to making changes.
In a speech during the election campaign, Justin Trudeau said, “We are committed to ensuring that 2015 will be the last federal election conducted under the first-past-the-post voting system.
“We will convene an all-party parliamentary committee to review a wide variety of reforms, such as ranked ballots, proportional representation, mandatory voting, and online voting.
“This committee will deliver its recommendations to Parliament,” he added. “Within 18 months of forming government, we will introduce legislation to enact electoral reform.”
Apparently Mr. Trudeau believes his caucus knows best.
Trudeau does not trust the general public with the ability to make a decision about the future of the electoral process in Canada. He only trusts his newly-elected crop of MPs.
It is quite a change from the government of New Zealand. In the early 1990s, New Zealand adopted a proportional representation system. In 2011, a Conservative government proposed a change to the New Zealand system and put those changes to the general electorate.
In that vote, the New Zealand electorate chose to keep their proportional representation system. Politicians debated the changes in the New Zealand parliament but the people made the decision.
In Canada, the proposed changes will be debated in the House of Commons. But with a massive majority, the Liberal party under the leadership of Justin Trudeau will put through the changes in our electoral process.
No party in Canada received 50 percent plus one vote in the last election. It is impossible to think that a party without 50 percent support of the population would change Canada’s electoral system.
A simple referendum, that all Canadians could vote on, would be more appropriate.
We have a system of representative government. We elect people every four years to make decisions on our behalf.
Changing the electoral process is so fundamental that every Canadian should have vote in the outcome.

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