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The Star decides to attack MMP again.

Quite remarkably, the Toronto Star has decided to attack MMP a 2nd time within a week in their editorial section and again recommend it be rejected. This time in their editorial, they decided to stay away from charging there would be “appointed MPP’s”, a feature of their column last week, but they repeated the “unstable government” theme, as well as the fear of radical fringe parties holding the legislature hostage.

I’m not going to get into attacking their charges; they’ve used the same stuff before which has been easily refuted – what I find of interest is that they are so concerned about MMP that despite some polls showing it […]

More academic support for MMP

Another Canadian electoral reform expert – Professor Dennis Pilon from the University of Victoria – urges Ontarions to vote for MMP in the referendum:

The proportional representation system that Ontarians have an opportunity to approve during the Oct. 10 referendum is simple, modest, and addresses many of the major problems with contemporary Ontario democracy that have long been identified by academics and political commentators from right to left. Imagine more accurate election tallies, a more competitive political environment where every vote would count for something, and better representation of Ontario’s diversity. These are not hypothetical possibilities, but the actual experience of countries similar to Canada that have proportional representation, as […]

Student, minority groups come out in support of MMP

Some of our anti-MMP folk are chortling because all of the major Toronto newspapers have rejected MMP in their editorials. I’m not particularly surprised that mainstream establishment papers would do so – but what is more important to me is that several grassroots groups have officially endorsed it.

Amongst our minority groups/ethnic communities, MMP was given a strong endorsement by several groups, including the South Asian community, Chinese-Canadian groups, and the Canadian Tamil Congress.

Student groups across the province are also recognizing MMP as a system they can get behind. 16 student unions across Ontario have endorsed MMP, as has the Canadian Federation Of Students Ontario branch, believing that with […]

Garth Turner declares himself for MMP – the Globe gets perfectionist

This kind of came out of nowhere to some of us who support MMP, but I think we’re all delighted to see that Garth has come out yesterday with a long detailed column at his blog declaring himself in favour of MMP passing on October 10th:

A proportional representation system empowers voters. It gives them more choice. It ensures the majority opinion is reflected in government. It is fairer. It allows smaller parties a role. It encourages compromise. It lets parties increase the role of women and minorities as list candidates. It permits citizens to decide on the best local candidate, and also the best party to govern. One voter. […]

Ontario Liberals commit to democratically selecting their list MMP candidates

The folk at Liberals For MMP received an email from the Ontario Liberal Campaign that states that the party will select its list MPP candidates through “a democratic and transparent process” if MMP passes on October 10th.

With this announcement, all four major Ontario parties – including the PC’s – have now committed to selection of List MPP candidates through democratic means. This has now completely kneecapped and destroyed the argument that “party hacks will be appointed by party leaders” that the NO MMP side and the Toronto Star editorial board has been trying to use to fear-monger about MMP.

It’s time to get the word out to the people […]

This and that.

– Will John Tory’s flip-flop on allowing a free vote of the faith-based school funding issue “change the channel” as he and his strategists claim? He’d better hope so, and quickly, because SES has a poll out mirroring the 10 point Liberal lead that Ipsos’ weekend poll had. The NDP probably isn’t very happy today either. The poll seems to indicate the Liberals picked up support from them, and in particular, the female vote went from the NDP to the Liberals.

– Jim over at the Progressive Right has a great example of how MMP would be a benefit to a voter like Joanne’s situation (ironically a FPTP supporter, which […]

The Toronto Star gets shrill

Well.. I’m not particularly surprised at the Star rejecting MMP in their editorial today. They pulled out every distortion of MMP they could find to belittle it and try to fear-monger with. What surprises me out of this editorial is that according to the Star, everything is hunky-dorey with FPTP and nothing is broke, so why fix it?

Yup.. with declining turnout in our current electoral system, with 3/4 of the Ontario candidates being male and 90% white, with false majorities, this system is so perfect that only 3 democratic countries left in the West use it.

With this editorial, the Star clearly shows that while it is a liberal […]

In other news, another bizarre anti-MMP column.

If you’ve read his columns dating back the past year, it will not shock you that Ian Urquhart has come out against MMP this morning in his column in the Toronto Star. His rationale is interesting – apparently it comes down to more parties is a bad thing and we MIGHT get that under MMP, and it might allow another Mike Harris type government.

As stated over here, there are not many cases in MMP in other jurisdictions where Urquhart’s scenario has occurred, but regardless of what parties get elected to the legislature, MMP is going to ensure that any legislation passed will have the support of parties that represent over 50% of the popular vote in Ontario – in otherwards, a majority of people. I think quite frankly, that gives whatever legislation is passed legitimacy and a mandate that it might not have under the current system.

Looking at Ian’s main claim in his column, I’m still not sure where all these voters for the Freedom Party and the Family Coalition Party are coming from to give them a minimum of 3% support, which Urquhart claims could happen. Yea, it could,  but a) I find it unlikely, and  b) if they somehow manage to get 3%, then quite frankly, they’ve earned enough support to be represented in the legislature, so good for them. In addition, if the mainstream parties wanted to (and I’m talking the “big 3” parties), they could easily band together to prevent so-called radical fringe parties from controlling the legislative agenda.

This isnt quite as bad as Sheila Copps claiming a radical Islamist party would hold the balance of power in the legislature under MMP, but it’s close (On a side-note, I don’t consider the Greens to be a “quirky environmentalist party” – but maybe that’s Ian preferring we have as little parties as possible. He must love the 2 party system the US has).

For a more thorough rebuttal to Ian’s column, check this blogposting out.

It’s a start.

A H/T to Jim Calder of the Progressive Right for finding this story; John Tory on the picking of list candidates in the National Post:

The Conservative leader went on to say that if the referendum passes, his party will likely find a democratic way to develop its list of candidates. “The history of our party is that the party insists on choosing its candidates democratically. Even the notion that the leader would appoint candidates is something that has been not well received when it’s come up.”

Its not an iron-clad commitment to pick democratically, but I applaud Mr. Tory for saying this much; its much better then what was being said by him a couple of days ago. He is correct in that it would be nice to hear Premier McGuinty’s thought on the electoral reform being proposed, as well as the way the Liberal list candidates will be chosen.

Vote For MMP takes John Tory to task.

Not too long ago, I criticized John Tory for having the audacity to complain that MMP would mean that List Candidates would be “appointed” by party leaders, and these MPP’s would then only answer to the party. I pointed out that Tory was in a position as PC party leader to help prevent his own fear from happening by publicly declaring that the PC party would make sure to democratically select their List candidates. I challenged him (as did others in the Vote For MMP campaign) to show some of that vaunted “leadership” on this issue (which he keeps trying to tell people he has) and do a declaration to […]

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