Saturday, April 23, 2011

Proportional Representation

If the Tories win a minority, but the NDP gets more seats than the Liberals and more than the Bloc in Québec, will we get a majority in favour of electoral reform?

13 comments:

Ian said...

That would be the best possible result.

But do the Tories really support electoral reform? I don't see how it's in their interest. The majority of Canadians are centre-left.

Election Watcher said...

I was thinking the Liberals and the Bloc would support it, or else they would risk being relegated to oblivion.

Anonymous said...

What sort of question is this?? Man..up till now...you were all scientific! Now you are revealing your true partisan leanings. Save that kind of question and musing for a more personal blog. This one was very useful and informative...but you just blew it!

Election Watcher said...

I'm curious: what are my partisan leanings?

I don't see how musing about the system for allocating seats is inappropriate on a blog about... seat allocation. I also don't see how this post makes others any less useful or informative.

Bernard von Schulmann said...

Liberals have a long history of being fundamentally being opposed. Bloc is fundamentally opposed. I can not see either party supporting the idea.

The Reform party was a major supporter of electoral reform. The PCs were not. When the merger happened, electoral reform was pushed out the door by the PC folk from the east. There are still a number of Conservative MPs that have actively supported electoral reform.

Meanwhile as to Canada being mainly centre-left, I think that is a major misread of the Liberals. The Liberals are more centre right and centre left and ultimately really only interested in being in power. One only need to look at how the Liberals are provincially when it is a province where the NDP is in power or could be in power.

Anonymous said...

The word "reform" leans toward a value judgement or a bias given our current "first past the post" system/ tradition! Sure..sure..there are other ways perfectly legal and constitutional in our Parliamentary system...like "coalitions" and the such. Fact of the matter is...the only parties or more accurately...citizen's who vote for said system....crying out for "proportional representation" is the Green Party and the NDP...and their voters..the two parties who cannot form government any other way (despite Jack's little good luck the past week).

Look. This is your little project. I actually go to it at least three times a day. I respect it...and enjoy it...and put a certain amount of trust in it. But that post about "prop rep"just come's out of nowhere...and stylistically does not gel with your more scientific and sober observations of the facts. My little opinion does not matter I know...and the fact that you lost a follower will not matter to you either...

We will both live lol! But a little word of advice from someone you do not give a shit about? Be careful! Be consistent! Do not have these little "flight's of fancies" in your reporting! Stick to what the aggregate's and what the numbers are telling you!

Election Watcher said...

The Bloc is *not* fundamentally opposed to proportional representation. In fact, it is in favour of it in a sovereign Quebec. The Bloc has not taken position for or against proportional representation in the House because they don't view it as their responsibility to either work for or impede democratic reform in Canada...

As for the Liberals, if they fall behind the NDP and, as you say, all they want is to be in power, they may well revise their position.

I view the Liberals as centre-left socially, and variable economically. Chrétien and Martin were definitely centre-right on fiscal issues. I'd say Dion was in the centre: he proposed deep corporate tax cuts right before Flaherty went ahead and did it, but his electoral platform was progressive. Ignatieff has a centre-left economic platform. Overall, I'd say the Grits are centre/centre-left, and which of the two it is depends on the leader and political landscape.

Note that the Quebec, Alberta and BC Liberal parties are not tied with the federal Liberals - they just share a name. In all other provinces, the Liberals are quite consistent ideologically in being centre/centre-left.

Election Watcher said...

Anonymous: I in fact do not support proportional representation (I'm neutral), the NDP or the Greens. So you're seeing a bias where there isn't. I don't see why "reform" carries a positive connotation - it just means change. After all, Stalinization and the Great Leap Forward were also reforms...

Besides, this blog isn't meant to be unbiased; only the projections are. There have actually been much more opinionated posts (click on the "Opinion" and "Economics" labels to see them). You'll note that during the campaign, I had good things to say about TFSAs and certain Liberal policies. The NDP is the party that I have the most harshly criticized.

Ultimately, it is your choice which blogs to read, though I hope that you'll come back to this one. However, if you're looking for a blog where every single post is about seat projections, this isn't it.

delshilo said...

I do not think the Libs or the Bloc (would lose a lot of seats) would be in favor of PR however if they capitulate then they (coalition)
would have to put a referendum to the cirize4ns of Canada.

Anonymous said...

Fair enough. My apologies. Just in this heated confusing election I get suspicious of who is saying what and for what reason. But your clarification of things helps immensely and I concur. Fact of the matter is there is a sea of blogs out there about seat projections but only a few worth following. Yours is ine of them and rest assured I will contiue to follow yours right up until election day. Thanks for hearing me out! :_)

Gizmo said...

As much as elections in Canada inevitably lead to heated political debates, I am so grateful for these debates, no matter how nasty they get. Where I used to live, freedom of expression was non existent. I hope Canadians appreciate the wonderful system of government they have, no matter where they tend to be on the political spectrum. When I watched the debates, PM Harper had to abide by the rules of some little-known moderator and had to answer to the people's questions - wow, how refreshing and shocking for me. Where I came from, questioning the leader would mean immediate imprisonment! How I love you Canada!!

Ian said...

If Quebec based its decision to separate from Canada on a first-past-the-post, riding-based election, then it would already have separated, despite the fact that a majority (albeit sometimes slim majority) voted NO.

I think most people would find it scandalous that an important decision about our collective life could be based on such an outcome.

Yet we allow all sort of other important decisions, about health care, the environment... all sorts of things that greatly affect our welfare, we allow them to be decided by an archaic first-past-the-post system that usually results in a majority government that only represents a minority of Canadians.

Why anybody finds this acceptable is beyond me.

It's not as if there are no good, proven alternatives. Germany has a system of mixed member, partly proportional representation. That country is doing quite well.

What are Canadians afraid of? How well informed are those fears?

Election Watcher said...

I think the worry isn't that we end up like Germany, but that we end up like Italy 1950-1990 or Belgium...