MP John Aldag

MP John Aldag

Cloverdale – Langley City MP John Aldag hosts discussion on alternative voting methods

Member of Special House of Commons Committee on electoral reform calls public town hall meeting

  • Jul. 29, 2016 5:00 p.m.

Cloverdale – Langley City MP John Aldag is bringing the discussion about the way Canadians elect their federal governments to his home riding.

Aldag has called a public town hall meeting about “the principles and values that underlie Canada’s federal electoral system and democracy” for Tuesday, Aug. 2 at 7 p.m. at the Cloverdale Recreation Centre at 6188 176 St. in Surrey.

Aldag’s MP website said the meeting, for residents of both Langley City and Cloverdale, will cover a number of topics including “strengthening the link between voter intention and electoral result,” raising voter engagement “including by underrepresented groups” and making the electoral system “more accessible and inclusive.”

Aldag was appointed in June to the Special House of Commons committee that is reviewing Canada’s electoral system.

Other committee members were not expected to attend the meeting.

The current Canadian system, the so-called first-past-the-post approach, awards victory based on which party has the most votes in individual ridings.

It has been criticized for allowing parties to form governments without winning a majority of the overall popular vote, as happened again when the new Liberal government in Ottawa won a majority of the seats in parliament with 40 per cent of the popular vote.

As well as looking into other approaches to voting, the committee on electoral reform is examining whether voting should be mandatory and if people should be allowed to cast ballots online.

The committee is composed of five Liberals, three Conservatives, two NDP, one Bloc Quebecois and one Green Party member.

On Thursday, the committee wrapped up its latest round of hearings in Ottawa after spending three days listening to  academics and experts from countries that use alternative approaches, such as the single transferable vote system in Ireland, where voters pick several candidates and rank them from first to last.

The committee will resume deliberations on August 22.