Posts Tagged ‘Preferential vote’

Impatient for democratic reform?

Saturday, March 26th, 2016

The federal Minister of Democratic Institutions Maryam Monsef must have the easiest job in Ottawa. Sure, she is new to the job and has lots to learn but so far, she has had it easy. Even her announcement of the Senate of Canada appointment process was made easy. She made it last December along with Liberal House Leader Dominic LeBlanc. It was LeBlanc who did the heavy lifting.

Not that the Senate solution was anything impressive. It was an elitist solution to appointing elites. It was a singularly unimpressive temporary solution. The Senate of Canada is an anachronism that exists only because of Canada’s constitutional constipation. If we had a real and hard-working Minister of Democratic Institutions, reform of the senate would be high on the docket list of important reforms.

Like many first and second generation Canadians, the Minister is probably reluctant to touch the monarchy file. This writer is a sixth generation Canadian and he has been fed up with the claptrap about the monarchy since being indoctrinated in Grade 3 of our Ontario school system. There is nothing more meaningless and embarrassing to Canadians than our foreign monarch and her dysfunctional family.

But even if we continue to have democratic institution ministers who are afraid of Canada’s silly monarchist supporters, we have got to do something about the governor general. This is elitist to the extreme to house and use some supposedly patrician Canadian who can only do as the prime minister tells him or her and carry on as though they are performing some important duty. We could hire an actor to do the job much cheaper.

Of course we are all waiting for the democratic Institutions minister’s big scene when she appoints a committee of the House of Commons to decide how Canadians will vote. Her role here is to make Prime Minister Justin Trudeau look good about keeping his promise. That is the promise that 2015 was the last time Canadians would use First-Past-The-Post voting to choose their Member of Parliament.

The minister’s problem is that the Conservatives will agree to nothing and the New Democrats want proportional voting. If the Liberal majority picks preferential voting (indicating your first, second and third choice to create a mock-majority) and no other party supports them, there would be no credibility to a change without a referendum. And good luck on that!

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