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UPDATE: National Day of Action for Electoral Reform, May 14

A National Day of Action for Electoral Reform has been called for this Saturday May 14. Rallies are planned for Montreal (Berri Sq. 2 pm), Ottawa (Parliament Hill, 2 pm), Vancouver (Vancouver Art Gallery, 2 pm), Toronto (Queen’s Park, 2 pm), and Calgary (Harry Hays Building 2 pm).

The Council of Canadians has for years supported proportional representation as an important aspect of electoral reform in Canada and has repeatedly called on the federal government to make this a priority and to consult with Canadians on a preferred model before its adoption.

We have noted that in March 2004, the Law Commission of Canada submitted a detailed proposal to the House of Commons calling for mixed-member proportional representation. This is the electoral system in place in Germany, New Zealand, Scotland and Wales. And on October 18, 2004, the House of Commons unanimously amended the Speech from the Throne to instruct the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs “to recommend a process that engages citizens and parliamentarians in an examination of our electoral system with a review of all options.” Almost seven years later this has not happened.

The day after the May 2 vote, Fair Vote Canada stated, “The Conservatives have won 54.22 per cent of the seats with only 39.62 per cent of the votes, one of the least legitimate majorities in Canadian history. …If the seats were won in proportion to the votes that were cast, the numbers would look like this: Conservatives 122 (45 fewer seats than they won under our current electoral system and below what is required for a majority government), NDP 95 (7 fewer seats), Liberals 59 (25 more than what they now hold), Bloc Quebecois 19 (15 more), Greens 13 (12 more).”

More information on the May 14 day of action can be found at http://www.facebook.com/pages/National-Day-of-Action-for-Electoral-Reform/220365314641817#!/pages/National-Day-of-Action-for-Electoral-Reform/220365314641817?sk=info and http://nationaldayofaction.ca/.