New Act offers British Columbians real choice on electoral reform

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VICTORIA – Today the New Democrat government introduced legislation to ensure British Columbians will have the chance to review and confirm their support for electoral reform if voters choose proportional representation in this fall’s referendum.

The Electoral Reform Referendum Act will enable a second referendum after two election cycles if British Columbians vote to move to a proportional representation voting system in November.

This comes one day after Quebec became the latest provincial government in Canada where our current, outdated voting system led to skewed results.

Yesterday’s Quebec general election saw the conservative Coalition Avenir Québec receive only 37 per cent of the popular vote but 59 per cent of the total seats, meaning they don’t have to work with anyone while pushing through their agenda.

Quebec’s results echo what happened in Ontario in June, when Doug Ford’s Conservatives took 61 per cent of the seats with only 40.5 per cent of the vote. Doug Ford also doesn’t have to work with anyone else, holding 100 per cent of the power.

New Brunswick also experienced a distorted result on September 24, when the Liberal Party received a significantly higher number of votes (38 per cent to the Conservatives’ 32 per cent) but the Conservatives won more seats.

These are just three of the latest examples of people’s votes being thwarted by an outdated electoral system.

These unfair results demonstrate why British Columbia should follow most of the rest of the world in adopting a fair, proportional representation voting system.