BC-PR, how it could be customized

The main difference in how almost any proportional representation system (whether it’s SNTV, STV, MMP, RU-PR, or my proposed BC-PR variant of RU-PR, is how you divvy up the regions and top-up seats, if any.

Elections under first-past-the-post (FPTP) are not proportional, a party can win 40% of the vote but a majority of the seats. Top-up seats address this by
Continue reading “BC-PR, how it could be customized”


BC-PR: building a made-in-BC form of proportional representation

In my last post I discussed Rural-Urban Proportional Representation (RU-PR) and it’s many advantages. It’s a newer system, proposed by respected former Elections Canada head, Jean-Pierre Kingsley. I think it may well be the best system yet proposed. Perhaps its only flaw is that some people might argue it’s difficult to explain. I personally think electoral reformers are up to the challenge of explaining it, but its likely not everyone will agree with me.

Is there an alternative form of RU-PR that maintains those advantages, while mitigating that perceived disadvantage? I think there is, and for the lack of a better name I’m going to call it “BC-PR” for the time being.

If first the advantage of RU-PR is Continue reading “BC-PR: building a made-in-BC form of proportional representation”

Rural-Urban PR

Why do people want proportional representation (PR)? Some want it because they see that not all voices are reflected in politics in this country. Others want it because they see the opportunity to break up the old political dynamics, such as “safe seats” (which leads to parties focusing almost all their attention only on “swing ridings”, meaning the opinions of voters in swing ridings are disproportionately important to parties across the political spectrum).

Why do people oppose PR? I think it’s Continue reading “Rural-Urban PR”

First run of 2017 BC results under SNTV

This is a first run of what the 2017 British Columbia provincial election results might have looked like under SNTV. Though if we change our system the votes would understandably change, by necessity I am using the results exactly as they were and presuming that most voters would opt for the same party even if the candidate were different. I believe this latter assumption is fairly reasonable, given the polarization of recent BC elections and the fact that when polls show that voters increasingly rate party policy and leader personalities as stronger reasons to support a party than the local candidate.

This is a quick-and-dirty version, but I’m working on a more involved version that looks a bit more carefully at what candidates were running in 2013 and 2017 and looking at what difference popular incumbents might make. At one point I wasn’t even going to publish these results, but so far it’s not looking to be too much different than these numbers so I’ve decided to publish these.

Please refer back to My post on proposed SNTV ridings for how I’ve grouped these. And without further ado, here are the numbers: Continue reading “First run of 2017 BC results under SNTV”

New federal polls out

Two new federal polls are out. One from Abacus Data and the other from Nanos.

Nanos‘ weekly tracking poll has the federal Greens at 6.11% nationwide, with other parties at 38.3% (federal Liberal), 31.21% (federal Conservatives), and 16.17% (federal NDP). A regional highlight has the federal greens at 14.28% in BC, off recent highs but likely far higher on Vancouver Island (and especially Greater Victoria) if past polls are any guide.

Another poll from Abacus Data has similar numbers for the federal Green Party (within the margin of error at least) with 5% nationwide support and 15% in BC. Another regional highlight in the Abacus poll is 7% in Saskatchewan and Manitoba for the federal Greens.

SNTV? We’d need candidates.

Under Single Non-Transferable Vote (SNTV), parties would be unlikely to run full slates of candidates in most ridings. I see this as a real positive, and one of SNTV’s benefits over STV actually. Unlike the ballot transfers of STV, SNTV is a one-person, one-vote system like first-past-the-post (FPTP), it’s just one with proportionality because multiple people are elected per riding. That means a party is best served by only running as many candidates as it think are likely to win. If you think you could win 3 seats in a riding and you run 4 candidates, you may dilute your vote enough to win only 2 (or even fewer). So while SNTV builds confidence that a vote is far more likely to count and leads to less strategic voting amongst the public, it does lead to strategic candidate nomination.

Why do I think this is a good thing? It reduces the number of candidates on the ballot vs. Continue reading “SNTV? We’d need candidates.”

What if BC’s 2017 election had been done under SNTV? First we need new ridings.

What if BC’s 2017 election had been done under SNTV? I’ve been wondering the same thing, and have started re-running the numbers to see how proportional it might be. But first, we need new ridings.

For this exercise, I chose to Continue reading “What if BC’s 2017 election had been done under SNTV? First we need new ridings.”

Voice of B.C.

Vaughn Palmer (a journalist many people will know from his editorials on Vancouver Sun) also does a show on BC Politics on Shaw TV called “Voice of B.C.” With the unusual result of the 2017 election, I’ve been watching it on TV every week since. The show is also available on video streaming service Vimeo, not only for the current episode but episodes stretching back to 2010. With BC politics looking to be so exciting for the coming years, Voice of B.C. is now must-see-TV for me!

SNTV, a simpler form of adding proportionality to our voting system

The 2018 referendum seems so far away, and yet I think the time between then and now will likely fly by. So I continue to reflect on it daily about what system should be offered, how it might be promoted, how the public may react to different options, etc.

I recently did an article on the PR system(s) we might see on the ballot next year. We may be offered several options. One way that could happen is to use the Continue reading “SNTV, a simpler form of adding proportionality to our voting system”