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Posted: November 10, 2018

MP urges support for PR

Letter to the Editor

I am writing to urge people to consider supporting proportional representation (PR). While I recognize that PR seems more complicated that the current first-past-the-post system (FPTP), there is an overriding principle that makes it essential. Proportional representation makes every vote count… it makes YOUR vote count.

Under FPTP, the party with the most votes wins all of the riding, even if other parties collectively have far more votes. People who voted for anyone other than the winning party feel like their votes are wasted – because they are. In a democracy, every vote should count. The wasting of votes produces cynicism about elections, which explains why our voter participation rates are falling. When around half of eligible electors stay home, democracy is not healthy. And the newest voters, the youngest ones, have the least hope for our system. That compromises our democratic future.

The BC Liberals, many of whom are federal Conservatives, are waging a campaign of fear against PR because they don’t want to make every vote count. It will reduce their chances of forming a majority government – that is their motivation and people need to recognize that.

That is also why the federal Liberals dropped their support for PR after Mr. Trudeau’s 2015 election promise to implement PR in time for the 2019 election. They didn’t like the implications for their party, which would have to learn to share power in the future. Many of us felt betrayed, and rightfully so, when the federal Liberals walked away from PR.

We can lead the rest of the country with democratic reform. Encourage everyone you know to vote for proportional representation and give democracy a better future in British Columbia!

Wayne Stetski,

Member of Parliament for Kootenay Columbia


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