“We’ll make sure that Canadians have a stronger voice in Ottawa.”A line in Justin Trudeau’s speech in 2015 before the general election. He also said he would end “first-past-the-post electoral system”. This isn’t a party bashing article. This is just food for thought on why Justin Trudeau, and other elected officials, don’t measure up. From sketchy trips and the latest ethic scandal, it just seems to be the same game time and again, politicians not following through on campaign promises.
As Canadians, we can’t play into the party partisan game like the United States. We are a small enough nation to listen to many different voices and opinions as a collective. As Trudeau promised in 2015, it is time to seriously look at a reform in our voting system. This out of date system has been in place for well over a hundred years. All structures come due for repairs.
In many democratic countries like Denmark, Sweden, Switzerland, Finland, Norway, and Belgium, the proportional system has made its transition. New Zealand made the switch, albeit not as smoothly as some countries, in 1993. In 1996 it was tested in their next election and eventually an independent commission was formed to review boundaries and constituencies after every census to make new electoral maps work for a better democratic system. This has also been the reason these countries are seeing higher numbers of indigenous and female politicians being elected.
The power of the Canadian Prime Minister can pass a bill in the legislator more quickly than the President in the United States can pass them in the House or the Senate. However, that power that our premier or prime minister has can also work against our aging democracy. The lack of accountability continues to grow both federally and provincially. When the senate is racked up with followers of the PM or lobbyists are registered with the premier of Ontario which is against the Lobbyists Registration Act since 2014. The Integrity Commissioner has not issued a ruling on what a lobbyist can or cannot do when it comes to lobbying law. We need more accountability to go along with all the power in the PM or premier’s office.
It is also disturbing to hear so many people talking about voting strategically! Voting someone in just to keep someone out? What happened to voting for the right person for the job?
What party will stand for a stronger democracy and not just do a song and dance for electoral change, transparency, and ethics, but act upon this change that is much needed in Canada.
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