elected premier Dalton McGuinty's pledge to hold a binding referendum
new voting system before the next election may spell the end of Ontario's
The Liberal platform stated: "You
will decide how elections work...After consulting
with the public, we will hold a referendum on whether we should keep
take-all voting system or replace it with another. Alternatives to
our voting system
could include some form of proportional representation, preferential
ballots or mixed
BREATH-TAKING DISTORTIONS IN ONTARIO ELECTION RESULTS
usual, what the voters said at the ballot box is not what they
got. Compared to
the last election, the Liberals enjoyed a modest increase in the popular
40% up to 46%), but the voting system awarded them a whopping increase
(from 34% to 70%). In a proportional system, the Liberals would have
had about 48
seats and a minority government, rather than a 72-seat majority government.
Tories suffered a drop in the popular vote (from 45% down to 35%),
system punished them by taking away more than half their seats (from
57% to down
to 23%). In a proportional system, the Tories would have had about
35 seats rather
NDP actually increased their popular vote (from 12 % to 14%) but
seats decrease (from 9 to 7), jeopardizing their official party status.
In a proportional
system, the NDP would have had about 14 seats. The Green Party attracted
3% of the vote. Under a proportional system, the Greens would have
gained about 3
PROPORTIONAL REPRESENTATION MOTION DRAWS SUPPORT OF NDP,
ALLIANCE AND BLOC
NDP motion in Parliament on Sept. 30 for a national referendum
representation attracted surprisingly strong opposition party support.
Tabled by NDP
MP Lorne Nystrom, the motion marked the first time since 1923 that
voted on the issue of proportional representation.
Alliance and Bloc MPs, along with three Liberal MPs joined the
NDP voting in
favour of the motion. The Liberal caucus, as expected, voted overwhelmingly
against the motion, which was defeated 145-75.
the expected defeat, the push for a national referendum on a more
proportional voting system is certainly gaining momentum," said
president of Fair Vote Canada. "The range of MPs supporting the
the growing multi-partisan support for a fair voting system. We commend
Nystrom of the NDP and Ted White of the Alliance, both of whom serve
on the FVC
National Advisory Board, for their continuing support on this issue."
P.E.I. HOLDS MOST DISTORTED ELECTION IN CANADA THIS YEAR
election in Prince Edward Island on Sept. 29 set two records: 1)
Conservatives won a third consecutive majority for the first time;
and 2) PEI gained
the dubious honour of having the most distorted provincial election
many Islanders are well aware, Canada's first-past-the-post voting
wildly distort what voters say at the ballot box," explained Doris
of Fair Vote Canada. "Some parties gain a much higher portion
of seats than their
portion of the popular vote. Others parties are penalized with far
fewer seats than
they deserve. Unfortunately, PEI has some of the most distorted outcomes
Canada, with the opposition being severely under-represented."
distortion rate in the PEI election was 31% -- that is, the gap
between the 54%
of the popular vote and the 85% of the legislature seats won by the
comparison, the distortion rate in the Ontario election was 24%,
while in Quebec
it was 15%, in Manitoba and Nova Scotia 12%, and in New Brunswick 6%.
Premier Binns returning to office, we hope to see renewed consideration
alternative voting systems based on proportional representation," said
executive director of Fair Vote Canada. "While Quebec and British
also engaged in studying the alternatives, PEI still has an opportunity
to lead the
nation in voting system reform. We encourage Premier Binns to continue
important assessment process."