Monthly Archives: September 2012

Elections Canada form

Your president has created a new page under Join which gives the Elections Canada form for the declaration of a member of a party. The file is PDF you can just click on it and then print out the form.

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Letters to PEI

This is from 2012. If any wish more information on my proposed Dual Electoral System please email me at president @federalistparty.ca. In earlier posts are elections results using the Dual Electoral System. On the page for the National Congress on the blog tab is a post below the first one detailing the US Congress under the Dual Electoral System.

I have been sending letters to the 27 members of the PEI provincial legislature dealing with the Dual Electoral System instead of their using the first past the post. I’ve done all members of the Conservative opposition and I’m about half way through the governing Liberals caucus. Here is a copy of this letter.

The next PEI General Election has the following results the popular vote is Conservatives 50.2%, Liberals 46.5%, and others 3.3%. Seats won is 15 for the Liberals and 12 for the Conservatives. What then? Furthermore in the last election the Liberals did not get 80% of the vote they got 51% of the vote. Also 8.5% of the voters didn’t vote for either the Liberals or Conservatives and thus have no representation whatsoever. You had a recent plebiscite on electoral reform. Here is an alternative to the first past the post system and the election reform that failed.

An alternative voting system

The 3 R’s of Parliament are representative, responsible, and responsive. With our first past the post system we don’t even get beyond the first R of parliaments. Here is an alternative to both the current electoral system and proportional representation.

In the 2001 BC election 21% of voters did not vote for either the Liberals or the NDP. That means 1/5 of all taxpayers; the people that are paying the government’s bills had no representation whatsoever. For the 2005 election it was 13% and in the last election it was 12%. The worst-case scenario is what happened in 1987 in New Brunswick. The Liberals won every seat with 60% of the vote. Forty percent of the voters had no representation at all and thus no say in determining how their tax dollars are spent. I believe this is commonly referred to as taxation without representation!

Like many I know that our first past the post election system doesn’t give us a representative House of Commons but also like many I don’t like the various proposed proportional representation systems either. After the Quebec 1998 general election where the Liberals got more votes then the PQ but the PQ formed a majority government with it having 65% of the seats I thought we really do need an alternative to the first past the post system. What follows is my proposed alternative to FPTP and PR elections.

Dual Electoral System

This proposed system of representation comes from the House of Commons itself. It can be said of the House of Commons that it is a group of 308 voters who choose from among their number two principle leaders, one who leads the majority caucus of the House and one who leads it’s minority. This is the basis of the dual electoral system.

A preference ballot is used for voting. The candidate with the number one on a ballot gets one vote. The two candidates with the most votes are elected. The ballots are counted a second time with the elected candidate with the lower number getting one vote. Each elected member will have one ” member vote ” in the House to be used in regular sessions and one ” legislative vote ” for each vote received on the second count of the ballots. These votes are voted when the House is in legislative session and is used to pass what else, legislation! One day a week is set by the Commons for the legislative session and any bills requiring third reading are voted on during that session.

Last four PEI general elections

Election

Party

Seats

Vote

Dual

Leg Vote

2011

Lib

22

51%

27

51% / 60%

PC

5

40%

27

40% / 49%

2007

Lib

23

53%

27

53% / 59%

PC

4

41%

27

41% / 47%

2003

PC

23

54%

27

54% / 57%

Lib

4

43%

27

43% / 46%

2000

PC

26

58%

27

58% / 65%

Lib

1

34%

26

33% / 40%

NDP

0

8%

1

1%

The main drawback of this system is if you keep the same number of ridings you will double the number of members or having the same number of members will double the size of the electoral ridings.

Benefits of the Dual Electoral System

  1. Guarantee of an opposition since no party can have more than 50% of the members.
  2. In regular sessions the members have one vote each so there will be non-partisan voting on the election of the Speaker, rules of the House (2/3 majority), procedural motions and committee membership.
  3. In legislative session you will have proportional representation since each member will have one vote for each vote received on the second count of the ballots.
  4. No party lists since your still voting for the Member of Parliament of your choice. One MP represents the majority vote in a riding and the other MP the main minority vote.
  5. No major revision of the electoral map. Ridings should only be altered when the number of electors in a riding is 50% or less of the number of electors in the largest riding. Each election few if any ridings will change. This will mitigate the political fighting over riding boundaries or size for the purpose of any real or imagined partisan gain.
  6. An incentive to vote since the more votes an MP gets the more votes they have on voting on legislation. Also ridings will increase their voting strength in the Assembly if their voting turn out is higher than the average.
  7. All votes do count! If your first choice doesn’t get elected then one of the two candidates who did get elected will get to vote your vote because of the preference ballot.

   If the dual electoral system were to be used it would have to be decided what the maximum size of the legislative assembly should be. PEI’s legislative assembly currently has 27 seats. If an Assembly of 30 members were set this would give you 15 electoral ridings. This gives an 11% increase in the number of members and an 80% increase in the size of the ridings.

One can easily try it before you buy it! The PEI legislative assembly could establish the Assembly advisory council.  The top two candidates for each riding would be appointed giving you a council of 54 members. In regular session each member has one vote. In each riding the other candidates transfer their votes to one of the appointed candidates for that riding. When added to their own this becomes the number of votes they get to cast when the advisory council votes in legislative session. The council in regular session advises the Speaker of the Assembly on procedural motions and when in legislative session advises whether a bill should be adopted and passed.

Of all the provinces and the federal government PEI has the most stable 2 party system and thus is the most suited to try the Dual Electoral System. As for this last Quebec election here are the results.

Election

Party

Vote

Seats

Dual

Leg Vote

2012

PQ

32%

54

93

25% / 50%

Lib

31%

50

80

20% / 40%

CAQ

27%

19

72

17% / 34%

QS

6%

2

4

1% / 2%

ON

1%

0

1

<1%

Quebec Election

The big day is here. It’s Quebec’s general election for 2012. Me and my neighbor got to our polling station about five minutes before it opened. Already about a dozen people were there and more were coming as we went in. So hopefully we will have a good voter turnout for this election. Here is an alternate process for the determination of the formation of a government.

Custom and precedence

After each General election you would have the following sequence of events. The fourth Monday after each election you would have the swearing in of the elected members of the National Assembly. That Tuesday the Assembly would elect it’s Speaker. On Wednesday the Speaker would ask the Assembly on whom the lieutenant governor should ask to form the Government. On Thursday the top four candidates are asked to form a government by the lieutenant governor subject to the approval of the National Assembly. On Friday morning the Speaker puts to the National Assembly the question which of these Councils has the confidence of the Assembly to form the government of the province of Québec? The National Assembly then votes. The Speaker then swears in the third and fourth place councils as alternate Councils in the Assembly. Friday afternoon the National Assembly votes a second time on the two remaining councils. The winner becomes the government and the loser becomes the official opposition. The following Sunday the losing Council is sworn in as the Council of Opposition and the winning Council as the Council of Ministers for the government of Québec.

This process starts 28 days after each election and ends 34 days after the election with the swearing in of the Opposition and Quebec’s Government. For this General election the process would begin on Monday, October 1 with the swearing in on Sunday, October 7. Of course the negotiations leading up to Swearing In week would already settle the make-up of the Council-designates and almost certainly the outcome of the vote of confidence in the National Assembly.