IS PAULA BIGGAR A FRIEND OF DEMOCRACY ?
Let us know in the comments if you get a positive - or negative - response!
Hon. Paula Biggar
Tell Minister Biggar you want her to Honour The Vote!
3rd Floor, Jones Building
3rd Floor, Jones Building
PLEBISCITE VOTE: DISTRICT RESULTS FOR TYNE VALLEY - LINKLETTER
Mixed-Member Proportional - 49%
First Past the Post - 48%
After First Past the Post was eliminated as part of the Preferential Voting process, Mixed-Member Proportional had the support of 753 voters - well over the 488-voter threshold to reach 50%+1 mark in her district.
Minister Biggar was a member of the Special Committee on Democratic Renewal which defined the plebiscite question - including all 5 options - and the Preferential Voting process for counting the ballots.
During the plebiscite campaign, Minister Biggar was an active proponent of Preferential Voting - as a system which always produces a clear winner with majority support - and she respectfully brought forward her perspective to the debate. She also regularly repeated the phrase "The only wasted vote is a vote not cast."
After the plebiscite was over, during debate on a motion proposing the introduction of MMP before the next Provincial Election, Minister Biggar argued that because of low turnout - a large number of 'votes not cast' - she cannot support the motion. She seems to be willing to disregard, and thus waste the votes that were cast.
She has also said that, because Mixed Member Proportional Representation was in second place for the first three rounds of counting of the Preferential Ballot, that the end result cannot be taken as a true majority. She is applying 'first past the post' rules to a Preferential Voting process. This in direct contrast with her earlier promotion of Preferential Voting as a voting method, and to the clearly-defined process that she agreed to as part of the Special Committee on Democratic Renewal.
In refusing to support the motion to Honour the Vote, she is voting against the expressed will of voters in her district, and against the majority of voters in the plebiscite province-wide.
Let her know who you are & where you live!
If you voted for her in the last provincial election, tell her!
Tell her you expect her to Honour The Vote, represent the clear will of local voters in District 23 and the clear result across the province, and support legislation to move forward with Mixed Member Proportional Representation in time for the next Provincial Election.
If she does or does-not Honour the Vote, can she count on your vote in the next election?
Tell your personal story about the plebiscite - if you voted, why you voted, what your family thinks about Honouring The Vote.
Thank her for her time.
- This is a chance for the government to leave a legacy: the whole country is watching.
We can decrease cynicism in politics, by showing islanders that democracy is still worth participating in, and that votes still matter.
Many islanders chose not to vote because they knew the plebiscite was non-binding, and suspected that their votes might be ignored anyway, not making any difference. That cynicism about politics is what Wade MacLauchlan promised to break in the 2015 election campaign. We know that the Liberal party respects democratic processes, and if they want to strengthen faith in politics, they will listen to the voice of the people, to show that votes really do matter.
- What message is being sent to our young people about the value of casting a ballot? The Committee & Legislature gave 16 & 17 year olds the right to vote for the first time in this plebiscite. If their votes are ignored, and will mean so very little? How upsetting for those young people to experience this as their first connection with democracy and civic engagement.
- In this province's democracy, who has the ultimate say? The people, or the premier?
- There is no mandate to continue with the current First-Past-the-Post system. Only 31% of Islanders chose First-Past-the-Post as their first choice on the ballot. That's 69% of voters expressing a desire for a change in the way we elect our MLAs!
- Proportional Representation is the clear choice of the voters. On every round of counting, more than 50% of voters favoured Proportional Representation as their first choice. In the end, 52.4% of votes went to Mixed Member Proportional Representation, compared with only 42.8% for First-Past-the-Post. That is a clear majority as well!
- In a democracy, the voices of those who vote is what counts. Every Islander had the opportunity to participate in this plebiscite, and the 36% turnout does not invalidate the results of this plebiscite any more than the results of any other election. Most municipal governments across Canada are elected with a similar or even lower voter turnout, but that does not invalidate those elections.