McLeod says Liberals taking electoral reform away from Canadians

By James Peters
May 12, 2016 - 12:21pm

KAMLOOPS — The MP for Kamloops-Thompson-Cariboo says the Liberal government is not allowing Canadians to have a say on major electoral reform changes.

Democratic Institutions Minister Maryam Monsef announced yesterday a Liberal-dominated parliamentary committee would come up with recommendations to change the country's voting system.

Cathy McLeod says the government should be taking the question to Canada-wide referendum.

"I had always proposed what I thought was a fair solution," said McLeod. "The solution was, you give it to a citizens' assembly - this is not unlike British Columbia - you have a referendum, and 50 (per cent) plus one should be the barrier."

"What we have now is very much a political interest group dominated by Liberals."

"This is changing fundamentally the way we elect our representatives in Canada," said McLeod. "There is precedent set where you try and take, to the degree possible, politics out of it. They have not done that in this case. They have essentially stacked the deck."

McLeod notes she has surveyed Kamloops-Thompson-Cariboo residents on the issue, and 80 per cent believed the issue should go to a public vote.

"As much as I might think they're heading in the wrong direction, I recognize that Canadians did give them a mandate to do that," said McLeod. "But we're talking about something as fundamental as how we elect our representatives. We have precedent across Canada; when that conversation has happened, it has gone to the people."

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