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SPEAK­ING BE­FORE an au­di­ence of Hum­ber Col­lege stu­dents in Toronto in early March, On­tario Premier Kath­leen Wynne is­sued this bleak scenario of what might hap­pen if young peo­ple don’t vote in the June 2018 pro­vin­cial elec­tion.

“If you don’t vote,” the premier warned the youth­ful crowd, “then some­one who looks like me is go­ing to vote. Some se­nior per­son, older than me, some white per­son … the re­al­ity is that that’s the de­mo­graphic that’s go­ing to get out and vote.”

Not only did Wynne scape­goat se­nior vot­ers but she dou­bled down by sug­gest­ing that all se­niors are white. And why is turn­ing up at the bal­lot box a bad thing? Se­niors vote not only from self-in­ter­est but also for the good of so­ci­ety.

In­stead of bash­ing se­niors for vot­ing, Wynne should have praised them for ex­er­cis­ing their demo­cratic priv­i­lege. Be­cause if On­tario vot­ing num­bers mir­ror those of the 2015 fed­eral elec­tion – where 78.8 per cent of Cana­di­ans be­tween 65 and 74 went to the bal­lot box, com­pared to only 45 per cent of vot­ers be­tween the ages of 25 to 34 – she’ll have to hope her gaffe hasn’t turned off the prov­ince’s largest vot­ing bloc. —Peter Mug­geridge

Kath­leen Wynne

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