First off, Happy New Year everyone! I also hope you all had a good Christmas, and Happy Eastern Orthodox Christmas to those celebrating that this week.
Let’s talk electoral reform again, shall we? I know it’s the seemingly implausible “in” topic these days, but it’s been made into one, what with the Conservatives throwing a temper tantrum, threatening to use the unelected Senate to stop electoral reform if the Liberals don’t give in to their demand to hold a referendum (irony of ironies).
So along comes Andrew Coyne with this column. He is supporting NDP MP Nathan Cullen’s position: implement electoral reform and a new voting system – whatever that maybe and without needing a referendum – then have the voters try it out for at least 1 election, let everyone see how the new Parliament(s) work under it, and THEN have the referendum, which would give voters the choice between keeping whatever the new voting system is vs returning to First Past The Post.
I am open to this as a compromise position when we come down to the end of things after the committee reports back, if we still have Conservatives or others yelling and screaming and otherwise holding things up (though at this stage, which is basically pre-start of said Committee, I’m inclined to actually wait and see what gets proposed before making a decision on that, unlike the Conservatives, who seem determined to try and scuttle reform right out of the gate).
I would offer though if there is to be a referendum, that it be held possibly up to 2 years before the next election. I think in the middle of whatever government’s term is probably the best time to hold this, if this scenario were to play out.