More electoral reform puzzles

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Always telling the truth means never having to worry about keeping your story straight

According to the prime minister, “Proportional representation in any form would be bad for Canada.” But he promised that 2015 would be the last FPTP election. So he either intended to introduce a reform that would be very bad for Canada, or a non-proportional ranked ballot system. Giving Trudeau the benefit of the doubt probably requires us to rule out the first option, leaving only the second. It follows that when he promised that 2015 would be the last FPTP election, he was actually promising to replace FPTP with a non-proportional ranked ballot system. Why didn’t he say so at the time?

Given that this was the only reform of the electoral system that the government was prepared to contemplate, why was the scope of the national consultation process on electoral reform not narrowed to reflect this? Perhaps a national consultation on replacing FPTP with a preferential single-winner system would have met the requirement for consensus on a clear alternative that Trudeau retroactively imposed on the process. Furthermore, if Trudeau had decided that only a preferential single-winner system was really on the table, how can he avoid the charge of hypocrisy for accusing the NDP of bogging down the process with its single-minded insistence on proportional representation?

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One thought on “More electoral reform puzzles

  1. Pingback: The conditions for compromise, then and now | Popcorn Machine

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