Justin Trudeau has brought the idea of electoral reform into the 2021 Canadain federal election. He must be desperate. And hoping Canadians can’t remember his past promises.
Campaigning in 2015, he promised that, if he won, Canada would have seen its last “first past the post” federal election. He won. And six years later the system is unchanged.
Turned out there was a problem. A Parliamentary committee looked at electoral reform and came up with an overhaul of the system. Trudeau, who had claimed he had no preference as to what the new system woyuld be, turned out to have a definite preference. Despite consensus, he axed the changes. The new system wouldn’t guarantee his Liberals would be in power in perpetuity.
Now he is resurrecting the idea, but at least this time he is being honest. he wants ranked ballots, a method that would favor the Liberal party. Under proportional representation, which seems to be fairly popular, he says there is too much chance of electing “fringe” candidates. He didn’t define fringe, but I suspect he thinks that includes anyone who thinks differently.
I am okay with the current system, but I understand the desire for change. Proportional representation, as much as I feel it can cause government logjams, does allow those who mighty not otherwise have a voice to be heard. Unlike Trudeau, I think Canadians should have the opportunity to challenge the status quo, and proportional representation does allow the election of those who feel disadvantaged in the present system becasue they haven’t won over many voters.
Trudeau was all for electoral reform when he was leader of the third party in Parliament. It was no longer a priority when he won under the system he wanted to change.
Put simply, he broke his promise. But he has gotten away with such behavior in the past, and perhaps there are a few votes to be swayed if he makes the promise again.
Why would anyone trust him now?