Don’t be scared by flawed arguments
The No side wants to scare you with flawed arguments to stop you voting Yes to proportional representation:
1. Italy and Israel are false comparisons, as the only two PR countries that do not drop the bottom few per cent of votes to prevent splinter parties. All the proposed systems in B.C. would drop the bottom five per cent of the vote, creating stable governments and preventing splinters.
2. First past the post fosters “big tent” parties. Extremists inside the “tent” end up holding the balance of power and electing leaders such as Ontario Premier Doug Ford and the Tea Party’s President Donald Trump. Conversely, recently, Sweden’s main parties refused to form government with the ultra-right racist party. PR protected them from extremists.
3. PR countries see co-operation and accountability between parties. Parties maintain power via mutual respect, rejecting the call of lobbyists and big donors. First past the post breeds polarization and corruption.
4. PR strengthens regional representation and virtually eliminates “orphan ridings.” (Governments ignore “unwinnable” ridings under FPTP.) Parties will need every per cent they can get under PR, so they will serve voters.
5. You will have a local MLA. Claims that you won’t are just plain false.
6. New Brunswick: Liberals: 38 per cent votes, 21 seats. Conservatives: 32 per cent votes, 22 seats. As is common under FPTP, the party with the most votes lost the election. That’s not democracy.
Please vote Yes to proportional representation — for quality, stable, co-operative government. Jessica Van der Veen Victoria