Category Archives: policy

Dual Electoral System

42nd Federal election results

Party

Liberal

Cons

NDP

Bloc

Green

Ind

Seats

184

99

44

10

1

0

Dual

301

223

128

21

2

1

House votes

54%

29%

13%

3%

0.3%

0%

Dual votes

51%

29%

18%

3%

0.5%

0.1%

With Liberal/Cons members elected the NDP & Bloc & Green go to the Liberals

Liberal/NDP members elected the Bloc & Green to NDP , Cons 2/3 to Liberals

Cons/NDP members elected the Liberal & Bloc & Green to the NDP

Liberal/Bloc members elected the NDP & Green & Cons 1/2 to each

NDP/Bloc members elected the Liberal & Green to NDP , Cons 1/2 to each

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.

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 House 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 House of Commons should be. A House of Commons of 300 members would give you 150 ridings electing 2 members each. This results in an 11% reduction in the size of the Commons and a 125% increase in the size of the ridings. The Party standings in such a House would roughly be 134 Liberals, 99 Conservatives, 57 NDP, 9 Bloc, and 1 Green.

You can try it before you buy it by forming the House advisory council. This council to consist of the top two candidates for each riding. This giving a council of 676 members all having one vote in regular session. All the other candidates in each riding transfers their popular votes to one of the council members from their riding. This added to their own gives the number of votes they have in the council in legislative session. The Council in regular session advises the Commons on procedural votes and in legislative session advises the House on the passage of legislation.

 

Advertisements

Base Wage

queen-s-park

 

 

The Ontario public service wage act

http://www.cbc.ca/beta/news/canada/toronto/ontario-sunshine-list-1.3505138

The wages of all who work in the public service whether in the executive, bureaucracy, legislature, or judiciary should be based upon what is happening to those who pay those wages, namely the taxpayers. The concept of the base wage is simple for the proceeding year calculate the average income of those who are not retired. This is to exclude those who work for any level of government. Figure out the average monthly unemployment rate to two figures for that year. Reduce the average income by the unemployment rate and divide by 52. This gives you the base wage for that municipality, province, or the nation.

From StatsCan I got the following figures for the province of Ontario for 2015. Average annual wage of $50,781 and an average unemployment rate of 6.8%. The equation is (50,781 – 6.8%) / 52 = 910.15. The base wage is the first number to two significant figures that is equal to or greater than that amount which in this case is $920.

All salaries within the provincial government of Ontario would be paid an amount that is a percentage of the Ontario base wage of $920. It is calculated for the proceeding year and takes effect starting the first pay check on or after July first of every year. If unemployment goes up the public wages go down and if it goes down then those wages go up. If the average income of the taxpayers go up so does the base wage and if it goes down then on July the first so does the salaries of all public employees, top to bottom. I would set an amount that the wages can not go below.

For example set the general office worker at 65% the base wage. After 1 year it’s to go up to 70%, after 3 years to 75%, 5 years in the public service 80%, 10 years to 85%, and after 20 years it goes to the maximum of 90%. The process being the wages for any job classification starts at a certain percentage and increase for experience and seniority to a maximum after a set number of years. Those that are a specific position like premier or MLA or deputy minister for transport is a set percentage that doesn’t change.

Real Change Senate Appointments

g3403http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/senate-appointments-liberal-1.3496977

Just like Harper with Viceregal appointments the new Political Monarch (PM) creates a process for Senate appointments that doesn’t remove the PM of the day out of that process. The more things change the more the remain the same. The process is created by the PM of the day, changed by the PM, or cancelled at the pleasure of the PM and it still has the PM making the appointments so they can simply ignore the very process they create.

By an Act of Parliament the Governor-General makes Senate appointments on the advice of the House advisory council. This body is the top two candidates in each riding in the last election giving you the following membership.

Party

House seats

Council seats

% on council

Liberal

184

301

45%

Cons

99

223

33%

NDP

44

128

19%

Bloc

10

21

3%

Green

1

2

0.3%

Ind

0

1

0.1%

When a Senate seat goes vacant the two members from the same riding of any riding in that province or territory can nominate someone for appointment. The House advisory council by secret ballot votes yes or no for each candidate. To be recommended for appointment takes an absolute 2/3 majority (451) voting yes for that nominee. In the event of more then one getting 451 votes the one with the most votes is appointed. If there is a tie then the Governor-General has personal discretion to choose which of the tied nominees to appoint.

A non-partisan vote since no party can have more than 50% of the seats. The PM of the day will not create a process that removes the PM (Political Monarch) from the appointment process BECAUSE it removes the PM from the appointment process.

Mr. Real Change

g3403

http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/government-ads-liberals-1.3455529

As always with the change of government the new one promptly starts behaving like the previous government they criticized while in opposition. As with all these Political Monarchs (PM / Premier) “Some are better, some are worse, but in the end, they are all the same.”

There is to be created the Council of State which consists of the Council of Ministers and the Council of Opposition. This would include only those who hold the senior portfolios of the ministers of the crown as defined in an Act of Parliament and not the whim of the PM (Political Monarch) of the day. Equal number of members from both the government and the opposition of the day and presided over by the Governor-General. It would be this body that sets the rules governing the communications policy of the government of Canada and it’s departments and agencies. This requires a 2/3 majority vote of the council if introduced by the Prime Minister and the Leader of the Opposition. If introduced be just one of them then it requires a three-quarter majority vote.

Also as a direct subsidiary body you would have the Federal Government Communication Office (FGCO) charged with overseeing the implementation of federal communication policy. Chairman would be the Minister of state responsible for the FGCO and deputy chairman the opposite number in the Opposition. Also included are the minister of public service, the minister of heritage, and their opposite numbers in the Council of Opposition. At the start of each Parliament the Council of Ministers and the Council of Opposition each appoints a member of the FGCO who would serve for the duration of 3 Parliaments. Half the membership comes from the government and half from the opposition. Half are from the cabinet and the opposition council and half are appointed members with long terms of office.

The FGCO would currently have 6 Conservatives, 5 Liberals, and 1 NDP. This would include 3 Liberal ministers, 3 Conservatives in the opposition council, 3 conservative members, 2 liberal members, and 1 NDP member. The approval of the FGCO would be required for any advertising by the government of Canada and this needs the vote of 8 of the 12. Control of the Government of Canada’s website would be under the jurisdiction of the FGCO. Non partisan and not run out of the PMO and doesn’t stand a chance of happening. Some variation of the same old is all we can expect.

US Judicial Appointments

scaliaAs I have posted before, a different way then how senate confirmation of presidential appointments are currently done. This idea occurred to me after the nomination of Judge Bork by President Reagan. The Senate has every right to confirm, every right to reject, but no right to not vote in a timely matter. What the Democrats did then and what the Republicans in an even worse way intend to do now is wrong! For good reasons, bad reasons, or no reason the Senate is to confirm or reject every appointment made by any President of the United States.

This should be the process. After President Obama nominates someone to fill the vacancy on the Supreme court created by the death of Justice Scalia the Senate holds a vote to determine when the Senate holds a confirmation vote. There are 5 set days, 20 days after the appointment, 30 days, 40 days, 60 days, or the first sitting of the Senate 80 days after the appointment. The default is the middle setting of 40 days or some 8 weeks after the appointment the Senate will vote to confirm or reject the nominee. By super majorities the Senate can advance the vote to 30 days after nomination with the vote of 67 Senators or only 20 days after appointment by a vote of 75 Senators. By minorities the Senate can delay the vote to 60 days after nomination with the vote of 33 Senators or till 80 days after appointment by a vote of 50 Senators.

All confirmation votes of Presidential judicial appointments will occur on the first sitting of the Senate that’s 20 / 30 / 40 / 60 / 80 days after the President nominates someone to fill a vacancy in the federal judiciary. The minority can delay a vote but not block it and super majorities can advance that vote but not ram it through. Each appointment gets confirmed or rejected no early then 4 weeks to no longer then 16 weeks after the nomination by the President. One change I’d make would be for judicial appointments to require a 2/3 majority for confirmation. For the federal bench a 2/3 majority of the Senate present and voting and for the Supreme court an absolute 2/3 majority or at least 67 votes to confirm.

The Three Choices

g3827

The three choices:

This doesn’t refer to Stevie, Tom, and Justin. The three choices are a reform of the government formation process. In a tight three way race it is not inconceivable that the party that has the most seats in a minority situation is the party that got the third most votes in the General election or worst yet a majority. What if the incumbent PM refused to step down even though their party has the third most seats but argues they got the most in the popular vote? Anyone remember December of 2008? It is all left to a patronage appointee the Governor-General to decide the issue and with the incumbent PM right there insisting they must do what ever they say or overthrow our democracy. The three choices set out clear rules what is to be done after each election.

Largest: The leader of the party with the most seats is called upon to form a government. If the seat count is equal then the one with the larger popular vote. No non-confidence motions, no vote can bring down a government. This is replaced by a motion of dissolution. By an absolute majority (170 / 338) the House can dissolve Parliament and trigger new elections. It can’t replace a government only trigger new elections. The PM can’t ask the Governor-General for early elections. It’s fixed the next election is on the set election day or an early election triggered by a motion of dissolution passed by the Commons.

House election: At the start of each Parliament the Speaker after the members of the House of Commons are sworn in asks “who should the Governor-General call upon to form a government”? The four most endorsed candidates are invited to Rideau Hall and asked to form a council-designate, a government-in-waiting. After each leader forms a proposed government of say 16 to 20 members the Speaker puts the question to the House “which of these councils-designate has the confidence of this House”? The two with the least are dropped from the second ballot. The Commons votes a second time with the winner becoming the Council of Ministers and the loser the Council of Opposition. As with the above no vote in the House triggers an election only an absolute majority passing a motion of dissolution can trigger an election before the set election day. No vote can replace the current government with another. The Council of Ministers is the government for the duration of that Parliament.

Separate election: The same as a municipal election namely a vote for a mayor, the executive election, and a vote for the councillor, the legislative election. In this case a vote for an executive council to be the government in the next Parliament and a vote for your Member of Parliament. The executive and legislative elections are separate and institute a preference ballot. If on the first count of the ballots a candidate got a majority their elected. No candidate got a majority, count the ballots a second time with only the top two being counted and the one with the majority is elected. In order for an executive council of again say 16 to 20 members to get on the ballot they must be endorsed by the candidates for the House of Commons in the last election. Each candidate has votes equal to their popular vote. The four most endorsed executive councils are on the ballot. In this there is no early elections. Parliament just like municipal elections has a fixed term and set election day.

Alberta General Election 2015

o-ALBERTA-ELECTION-2015-facebookDual Electoral System

Voting is done by a preference ballot. On the first count of the ballots the top two candidates in each riding are elected. On the second count of the ballots the elected candidates get one vote for every ballot they have the lower number on. All the votes cast for the candidates who did not get elected are transferred to one of the top two candidates in that riding.

In the Legislature each member has one vote in regular session. In legislative session they have one vote for each of the votes they received on the second count of the ballots. The Legislature goes into legislative session every Thursday at 1 PM and during that session any bills up for a vote that week are voted on and passed or defeated. Any bills that were adopted by the Assembly are on the desk of the Lieutenant-Governor Friday morning for Royal assent.

Try it before you buy it. Form the Legislature advisory council. The members are the top two candidates from each riding. Each member has the one vote in regular session of the council. All of the candidates not on the council transfers their votes to one of the council members from their riding. All votes do get represented. These are voted when the council is in legislative session. Regular session votes advise the Assembly on procedural votes and in legislative session on votes to pass legislation.

Alberta General Election 2015

Party

Popular vote

Seats

Dual seats

Dual votes

NDP

41%

53 / 61%

71 / 41%

38% – 41%

PC

28%

10 / 11%

67 / 39%

41% – 44%

Wild Rose

24%

21 / 24%

33 / 19%

15% – 17%

Liberal

4%

1 / 1%

2 / 1%

1% – 2%

Alberta

2%

1 / 1%

1 / <1%

1%

Where the votes go on the second count of the ballots under the Dual Electoral System.

All the NDP vote goes to the PC candidate in the ridings where the top two are the PC and Wild Rose candidates. All the PC votes goes to Wild Rose where its the Wild Rose and the NDP. All the Wild Rose votes goes to the PC where the PC and NDP are the top two candidates. All the Liberal vote goes to the NDP

A clear majority votes for conservative parties but the Left-wing NDP gets 61% of the seats in the Legislature because of vote splitting. Wild Rose gets fewer votes then the PC but end up with more then double the seats. Time for a change. Time to try it before you buy it with the Dual Electoral System.

Under the Dual Electoral System the PCs would have ended up with a plurality of the votes in legislative session because of the transfer of votes from defeated Wild Rose candidates and some from the NDP in ridings where the top two candidates are the PC and Wild Rose. Together these conservative parties would have 56% – 60% of the votes in legislative session.