LETTERS: It's your duty to vote in electoral reform referendum

B.C. has barely two weeks left to mail their proportional representation ballot. If you're still on the fence about how to vote, here are some things to consider. 

Under first past the post, we elect false majority governments. They assume 100% of the power with less than half the popular vote. With PR, they would get a percentage of seats according to the percentage of votes they receive.

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With FPTP, over 50% of us are not represented in the legislature. PR would allow all of us to vote for the party of our choosing instead of voting against the party you like the least.

PR would eliminate safe seats such as ours. Many people in the North Peace don't bother to vote because a Liberal always wins. That will change under PR because we will be able to vote for the party that best reflects our personal views.

PR will eliminate false majority governments that can make major decisions without listening to the public will, our voices are shut out in favour of big business, corporation, and unions that donate vast amounts of money to parties to do their bidding, not ours.

A perfect example is Site C. B.C. is power secure for 100 years, but outside interests wanted it, so government rammed it down our throats despite huge opposition and many court challenges.

FPTP is a system designed for a two-party government, it is an archaic and outdated system that is no longer representative of today's politics. In B.C., we have 17 political parties, FPTP no longer works for us.

Another fallacy being touted by the No side of this debate is that fringe parties will be elected. That is possible under PR, but all dictators the world over are elected using FPTP. In Quebec, 37% gave 100% of the power to the CAQ party. PR would have given them 37% of the seats only.

PR is the future, only three nations use FPTP; 100% of countries that have changed from FPTP to PR have never reverted back, they are satisfied and better represented under a PR system. There is no threshhold in this referendum, if 30% of B.C. votes, with 20% choosing PR, our system will change with that small amount.

It's up to voters to participate in our democratic process, if you choose not to, that's your option. Vote, it's your duty.

— Shelley Ouellette, Fort St. John

© Copyright Alaska Highway News


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