Thursday, February 2, 2017

Open Letter to Justin Trudeau - Breaking the Electoral Reform Promise is Unacceptable

I wish to make it clear how unacceptable it is to me that the electoral reform promise is being abandoned.

We came out of 4 years of the high-handed demagoguery of the Harper government only to watch the United States enter 4 years of the even higher-handed demagoguery of the Trump government. Both were elected by a minority of the population. Your election was sandwiched between two of the most compelling arguments for Proportional Representation that history could ever concoct. If this doesn't convince you of the urgent need to pass Proportional Representation, nothing ever could, so clearly your reluctance has nothing to do with what's best for the country.

Nor does it have anything to do with the supposed "lack of engagement" of the Canadian people. Nobody's going to buy that one after well-attended town hall meetings and hearings across Canada at which the overwhelming majority of speakers expressed their support for Proportional Representation.

Why not tell us the real reason? We can't address your fears if we don't know what they are. Some say you don't want to pass Mixed Member Proportional (MMP) because of the larger ridings and large number of list seats. Then pass something else, such as Single Transferable Vote (STV) or Rural-Urban Proportional (RU-PR) or Mixed Multi-Member Proportional (M3P). There are no shortage of options to choose from.

If you still refuse to pass PR, know this: not only will I not vote Liberal in the next election, but I will do everything in my power to prevent the Liberals from winning another majority. And I will not be alone.

Have you already forgotten that you entered power thanks to a nationally co-ordinated strategic-voting campaign? Can you be so arrogant as to imagine that we'll do it again, after this betrayal?

Not a chance. If you force us to strategise again, the next strategy will be a Conservative minority government under Michael Chong with as many Green and NDP seats as possible.

I urge you to reconsider.

Vivian Unger

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