BC Conservative Leader Demands Clarity, Supermajority and 60% in Referendum

BC Conservative Leader Demands Clarity, Supermajority and 60% in Referendum

Interim BC Conservative Party Leader Scott Anderson questions NDP-Green pact's referendum plans to change B.C.’s voting system, and demands clarity and a fair and transparent process.

NDP MLA Bob D’Eith and Green MLA Sonia Furstenau announced a working group to "engage British Columbians about democracy" in advance of a referendum planned for next fall. The referendum will ask British Columbians - for the third time - if B.C. should switch to a proportional-representation voting system.

1 Proportional representation is an umbrella term used to describe several different alternatives to the first past the post system, including Party List, Single Transferable Vote, Additional Member System, and a two round runoff system. Each has different methods and influence the vote toward different outcomes.

"First, what exactly are we voting for?" asked Anderson. Which version of proportional representation (PR) are we looking at? Does the NDP hope to hold a referendum between first past the post and proportional representation and then if PR wins, unilaterally decide which version of PR to adopt? There are pros and cons to each, and I am deeply concerned that the NDP-Green pact will simply force the one that benefits it on all British Columbians."

"The BC Conservative Party demands that the referendum stipulate which version of PR the citizens of BC are voting for."

2 The two previous referendums held in BC on Proportional Representation (both defeated) required not only a 60% majority, but a super majority of constituencies with a majority 'yes' vote in 60 percent of the ridings. The reason for that is to ensure that there is clear support for a fundamental change in BC's voting system, and that one region doesn't dominate the others.

"Second, Ms Furstenau's announcement that 50 plus one is a sufficient benchmark is completely unacceptable. I know the NDP and Green parties want a PR system because it benefits them, but they cannot simply bully this change through. If they want to fundamentally change the way British Columbians choose their representatives, they must convince British Columbians that it is best for British Columbians. We demand that the same historical requirements of 60% and a supermajority of ridings be used to ensure a clear consensus for change.

Anderson's academic background is in political studies. He is currently a Councillor for the City of Vernon.

For more information:
Scott Anderson, Interim Leader, British Columbia Conservative Party
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/BCConservativeParty/ Twitter: @Conservative_BC Telephone: (250) 434-2550 | http://www.bcconservative.ca/