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January 21, 2006

Get Your Vote On

So which one of these fine fine parties did I vote for? Considering I have an equal amount of confidence in each of them (none), it was a tough choice. So I took the advice of a good friend of mine, and voted for the NDP. To paraphrase her advice, although the NDP won't win enough votes to form a government, having a strong NDP presence in Parliament is important to ensure social programs get enough attention. I don't agree with their fiscal policies, but I do like their focus on social programs. Also, it's a way of registering a complaint against the Liberals and Conservatives, who stand the best chance of actually winning.

Unlike here in the US, where a vote for a third party during the presidential elections is essentially a symbolic protest (yes, some would argue that it sends a message, just not a very loud one), a vote for the NDP, knowing full well they won't win makes more of a difference since they win seats.

For those of you so disillusioned with the prospects you're considering not voting, may I recommend you consider some of the smaller parties (NDP, Green or independents). That way you're sending the message that you're unhappy with the way things are. By not voting, you're not sending any message at all.

If that didn't convince you to vote, consider this: Canadian voter participation has been dropping steadily for over a decade, hitting less than 61% in 2004. In the 2004 US presidential elections, voter turnout was 64% up from 60% in 2000. We don't want a lower voter turnout than the Americans, do we? Get out and vote!

17:05 | Canada , | Politics


Also, if a party gets over 2% of the popular vote, they receive $1.75 per vote. So, by voting for a lesser party such as the NDP, the voter provides the party with the funds to potentially run better campaings in the future. That would give the NDP the income they desperately need to hire someone to figure out exactly where the money outlined in their platform for mass spending is actually going to come from! I enjoy Mr. Layton, but I can't agree with his "Gutenberg Solution".

Posted by: mark at January 23, 2006 5:48 AM

Excellent point Mark. It highlights another reason to vote for other parties, like the Greens or NDP - they benefit directly from your vote.

Although I need to question how this solution scales as the voting population increases...

Posted by: Chris at January 23, 2006 10:13 AM

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