Electoral Reform

Canada to be First-Past-the-Post

Jake Jasko
News Editor

As promised in his campaign, Trudeau has officially begun looking into alternatives to Canada’s current voting system.

Declaring early on that 2015 would be the last year to use First-Past-the-Post (FPTP) as a way of holding elections. The young liberal leader won last year’s election with only 39.5% of the popular vote, a fact that is oft-quoted as a reason to abolish the FPTP system.

The FPTP system has long been criticized for its ability to create false majorities, leaving voters to feel mis- or underrepresented. While many dislike the system, the relative clarity and simplicity of voting procedures under FPTP make it a strong favourite in terms of electoral systems. Not to mention that elections are expensive, and that more complicated systems require more resources to hold elections.

Source: Wikimedia
Source: Wikimedia

Maryam Monsef, the Minister of Democratic Institutions, has made a series of statements regarding the matter, indicating that “engaging voters” and “raising the voter turnout” are amongst her and her team’s top priorities. 68.5% of Canadians went out to vote in October’s elections, 7% more than the previous elections in 2011, and 10% higher than those in 2008. (Global News)

CBC reports that while PM Trudeau has expressed interest in a ranked ballot system, he has directly told Minister Monsef to explore all possible options, including proportional representation systems.

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