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Canadian Liberal Party Members Organize Pro-Proportional Representation Pressure Group

Published on February 2, 2013, by in General.

Within the Liberal Party of Canada (one of Canada’s two largest parties) there are activists who want their party to officially endorse proportional representation. They have organized to persuade their party to endorse it. See here for their webpage. Thanks to Thomas Jones for the link.

4 Responses

  1. Smart

    “one of Canada’s two largest parties”
    That ceased being true in the last election. the NDP and Liberals now have roughly the same support. Between 27-33% of the vote each depending on the poll.

  2. Demo Rep

    The Libs NOW want P.R. since the Libs and NDP are NOW dividing the left wing votes in the various regimes

    — such than many rightwing Cons win by pluralities only in the various gerrymander districts.

    See how P.R. got into the New Zealand regime (an EX-gerrymander regime due to the Brits).

    NZ manages to survive — but with the Brit tyrant Parliament type regime.

  3. Chris

    The districts in Canada (they use the term ‘riding’ in English and ‘comté’ in French) are not generally gerrymandered. They are drawn by civil servants. There are issues in some provinces (most notably Saskatchewan) where there are urban-rural mixed ridings and no all-urban ridings (which tends to favor the Conservatives), but the original rationale for this was to have the average geographic size as small as possible, not to favor one party or ideology (and I believe at the time the current boundries were drawn, it was the right wing that was split between the Progressive Conservatives and Reform/Canadian Alliance).

    The split left wing vote is an issue–the NDP and Liberals put together got over 50% of the vote, but the Conservatives won 54% of seats with just 39.6% of the vote.

    The Liberals endorsed the alternative vote (instant runoff voting) at their last convention, and there are significant voices for proportional representation in the party (most notably former leader Stéphane Dion), but the party as a whole is not behind PR at this point, largely because they think they can win a majority government in a three-way split as voters flock to them as the center party.

    The vote splitting is likely going to continue to hurt the NDP and Liberals and give the conservatives more seats than they should have. Either a progressive electoral alliance or else an NDP-Liberal coalition after an election could manage to change the system to eliminate this.

    New Zealand wasn’t particularly gerrymandered. Labour supporters were simply more geographically concentrated in cities than National supporters were, meaning Labour electorates tended to be much more strongly Labour.

    I don’t see how parliamentary democracy is tyrannical at all. Even British-style Westminster regimes are far more representative than the winner-take-all by state electoral college and gerrymandered Congressional districts which give reversed pluralities in the US.

  4. #3 – The “tyrannical” feature of the British system consists of (a) “rotten boroughs” ie lack of one-person one-vote districts which allows some MPs to be elected from districts with very small populations; and (b) lack of proportionality, giving majority control to a party that lacks majority support in the electorate. (In fact no British party has gotten more than 43% support in decades and the governments should all have been coalitions.)

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