Presentation to Citizens’ Assembly
Hearing at Victoria June 10, 2004
I have not voted for almost 20 years. I have only
voted in the 1984 federal election and I voted then for a party and
person who supported proportional representation. I
have been waiting for the opportunity to vote for proportional
representation. I registered to vote symbolically on
May 17, 2004 in preparation for the chance to support this system
coming into being in B.C. Without the
Citizens’ Assembly and the possible referendum
question, I would have continued to boycott the current system as I
find it offensive and undemocratic. The British system
has resulted in highly undemocratic government of business and
social elites and in B.C., it was designed deliberately to exclude
at times the following citizens: Women, Native peoples, Chinese,
Japanese, East Indians, Mennonites and Doukhobours.
Proportional Representational System I support: Mixed Member
In my opinion, the best option being considered is the Mixed
Member Proportional (MMP) system as outlined on Page 3 of the Free
Your Vote – Pro Rep Society’s
Spring 2004 flyer entitled “Hope for Democracy in
Keeping 79 MLA with 2/3 being constituency seats and 1/3 being
party lists seats. That would mean 53 constituency
seats and 26 party lists seats.
Require political parties to run candidates in at least 50% of
the constituency seats in order to qualify for lists seats.
Require political parties by law to select list candidates in a
democratic way that grant every party member a say.
A flexible list system where a voter can choose to accept the
list as ranked or choose one candidate to be placed at the top of
the list ( as recommended by the Law Commission of Canada for
Federal electoral reform).
I would disagree with point one in one aspect. I believe that
the number of MLAs should double to 160. Thus there would be two
MLAs in 53 constituency seats and 52 party lists seats.
The pay for MLAs would be cut in half to accommodate
this. Then by law half the candidates for the 53
constituency seats and 26 party lists seats would be Women thus
making B.C. the first province to be governed in gender equality.
Also a minimum of 10 % of the seats (16) would be reserved for