BC’s experiment with FPTP is recent, and a failure

Wait… recent? haven’t we exclusively conducted provincial elections under first-past-the-post (FPTP) since BC joined confederation?

No, we have not. Not only did British Columbia experiment with ranked ballots in the 1950s, but the first BC election conducted entirely under FPTP was 1991. Prior to that, the electoral system used in each riding was fluid, changing from time to time. Most ridings used at least three different electoral systems
Continue reading “BC’s experiment with FPTP is recent, and a failure”

Make Voting Simple

[There is a lengthier version of this article available here.]

I’ve been listening to those who advocate sticking with our current first-past-the-post (FPTP) system. And while I support proportional representation, I’ve decided that fans of FPTP have a point… though I’m not sure they realize it yet. Confused? Read on.

Voting Should be Simple

Supporters of first-past-the-post say voting should be simple, and I agree. One person, one vote, and the person with the most votes wins. What could be simpler, right? Well, all too often the winner doesn’t have a majority of the vote, and no one wants to “waste their vote”. This encourages voters to calculate who the probable winners might be, creating a confusing array of strategic voting possibilities, and that makes it the least simple option on the referendum ballot this November. Under proportional representation, however, almost every vote Continue reading “Make Voting Simple”

Make Voting Simple, Equal, Accountable, and Traditional

[There is a shorter version of this available here.]

I started this referendum cycle in favour of proportional representation (PR), but I’ve been listening to those who advocate sticking with our current first-past-the-post (FPTP) system. And while I still support PR, I’ve decided that the supporters of FPTP have a point… though they don’t know it yet. Confused? Read on.

Voting Should be Simple

Supporters of first-past-the-post say voting should be simple, and I agree. One person, one vote, and the person with the most votes wins. What could be simpler, right? Well, all too often the winner doesn’t have a majority of the vote, and no one wants to “waste their vote”. This encourages voters to calculate who the probable winners might be, both in their local riding and in the whole province. Should a voter cast a ballot for who they want to win? Or should they vote for a compromise candidate who might do better locally? Or should they take a chance on supporting a compromise candidate that supports a party that is stronger province-wide, because there’s a fourth party that they feel must be stopped at all costs? First-past-the-post is simple on the surface, but creates a confusing array of strategic voting possibilities, and that makes it the least simple option on the referendum ballot this November. Under proportional representation, however, almost every vote Continue reading “Make Voting Simple, Equal, Accountable, and Traditional”

Back at it

After a long absence due to work commitments, volunteering with the Fair Vote Canada in support of the referendum on proportional representation, and more, I’m back and blogging on Green politics in Canada. Look for new posts regularly in the weeks to come!

Another suggestion on improving EasyPR

It was suggested to me that EasyPR‘s proportionality could be improved by merging together some of the urban ridings. Instead of all ridings province-wide electing 2 people, the larger/rural ridings would be left alone to elect 2 people, but the smaller ridings could be merged together and elect more than two each. You could take two dense urban ridings and make one that elects 4 people, or you could Continue reading “Another suggestion on improving EasyPR”

“+Leaders” could be added to almost any PR system

One of the more interesting observations that was shared with me was that the “+Leaders” enhancement discussed in EasyPR could be added to almost any system. You could have STV + leaders, or MMP + Leaders. You could have RU-PR + Leaders, too. Almost anything really. So let’s look at the + Leaders a bit closer.

It was the Continue reading ““+Leaders” could be added to almost any PR system”

Ways in which EasyPR could be improved

One of the most interesting questions I’ve had was, how could my proposed EasyPR be improved? It’s an interesting question, because no system is perfect and every system has room for improvement. There are ways it could be improved, and even made more proportional, and I’ll explore that in this post.

The most obvious way it could be improved would be Continue reading “Ways in which EasyPR could be improved”