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A couple of conservatives make their pitch for MMP

It’s kind of interesting if you look at this list (accurate as of Sept 19th) that’s been compiled of the MPP’s who are asked whether they support MMP or not. The Liberals have slightly more favoured then opposed, and an equal # who are neutral. The NDP’ers (those who have been asked) and the Green’s are unsurprisingly unanimous so far in their endorsement of MMP. Take a look at the PC’s, however – so far, not a single Progressive Conservative MPP has come out in favour of supporting mixed-member proportional; which may be the reason John Tory is trying to invoke fear into the electorate of “appointed mpp’s” (a falsehood – they are elected), and “party hacks will control them” (when he as a party leader would be able to make sure that doesn’t happen by publicly committing to democratic methods to pick them).

There are conservative supporters or conservative columnists however who are trying their best to change that. Andrew Coyne makes the conservative case for MMP in his National Post columns today – an excerpt:

..what if there were a system in which no votes were wasted, where vote-splitting ceased to be an issue? There is such a system, and itís called proportional representation, of which the proposal before Ontarians is a variant. Not only the Greens, but other parties — libertarian, social-conservative, or other — might then have a fighting chance. The spectrum of acceptable ideas for debate would noticeably broaden.

Greg Staples, representing one of the few conservative bloggers who has endorsed MMP, also makes another case to conservatives here. Basically, he believes MMP would put a lot of votes into play, and that there would be actual policy debate, rather then everyone trying to play brokerage politics. He also states that unlike what some conservatives charge, MMP would probably give each side an equal chance to govern, and that it is not always going to tilt to the “left”. I’ll add that some conservatives in Ontario seem to forget they rules Ontario for 40 years straight at one point, and did so at one point with the help of the NDP (Ironically, some Liberals also seem to forget about the 40 years, but for different reasons).

Bottom line that these folks are saying is: conservatives should not be scared off from voting for MMP.

The argument being made here isn’t whether “left” or “right” or “centre” parties will benefit, its whether the voter is advantaged. We on the progressive side who support this have been arguing that, and these folks are arguing the same on the other side of the ledger.

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