Thursday, August 30, 2007

The Great Canadian Debate: Ontario MMP

Today, the Great Canadian Debate project is hosting an online debate on the Ontario MMP referendum question. The two bloggers arguing are Scott Tribe for Mixed Member Proportional and Cameron Holmstrom against MMP.

Voters in this referendum are being asked to choose between the current First-Past-The-Post system and the proposed Mixed Member Proportional (MMP) system. The MMP system was recommended by the Citizens' Assembly after months of study and deliberation. The process leading up to this referendum was unique because it was citizen-driven. The proposed alternative system had to come from ordinary citizens, not politicians who are inherently biased.

As this site posted earlier, to suggest that this unique process of citizen-driven reform can simply start over again at some point in the future and come up with a better alternative defies credibility. More than likely, most naysayers would view a defeat for MMP as a mandate to keep First-Past-The-Post for the foreseeable future.

Scott Tribe is a founding member of Liberals For MMP and a Grit blogger.

We encourage you to click on the online debate and take part in the moderated discussion (after registering on the forum.)

4 comments:

northwestern_lad said...

I must take issue with the following statement: "Cameron Holmstrom for "First-Past-The-Post". If you read my rebuttal, I am not pro-FPTP, I am just not in favour of this MMP proposal. I want electoral reform, but I am not in favour of this proposal.

I would hope that Liberals for MMP were not so blindly looking for a win on this that they would distort the truth, so I would hope that you would make that correction.

Matt Guerin said...

Cameron, the record has been corrected on this site. My apologies, I posted before clicking on the link to the debate site. However, I must say that the MMP proposal is the end result of a unique process of citizen-driven reform that began with the Citizens' Assembly. 103 randomly selected, ordinary Ontarians had a look at First-Past-The-Post as well as all the possible alternatives. They decided First-Past-The-Post needs to be replaced and they recommended this made-in-Ontario version of MMP. To oppose MMP, but still claim to be supportive of electoral reform is, in my opinion, disingenuous. This is the only process we'll ever have to see real electoral reform in Ontario, driven by citizens, not politicians or their supporters (like you and I.) To vote down MMP is to vote for First-Past-The-Post for the foreseeable future, as far as I'm concerned.

northwestern_lad said...

Matt... I appreciate you point of view and thank you for correcting that.

"To vote down MMP is to vote for First-Past-The-Post for the foreseeable future, as far as I'm concerned." I guess we just have different approaches to how we can get some form of PR that will work.

Mark Greenan said...

"To vote down MMP is to vote for First-Past-The-Post for the foreseeable future, as far as I'm concerned."

Amen, Matt! As I've told Cameron in other fora, it is the height of naivete to think that Ontario's legislators will take a vote against MMP as anything other than a vote against electoral reform.