2017 National Seminar – Debate Motion

July 29, 2017

This House supports a national referendum on electoral reform in Canada.

The committee, made up of representation from all parties, studied the issue and in December 2016 presented a report which recommended a form of proportional representation and that a national referendum be held. The full report can be found here: http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/wherry-electoral-reform-committee-1.3866879

Despite the suggestions of the committee, in February of 2017, Justin Trudeau announced the government was abandoning all attempts at electoral reform during its term as government and that no changes would be considered for the next federal election in 2019: http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/trudeau-electoral-reform-mandate-1.3961736

Many reasons were cited, including the suggestion that the public had no “desire” for electoral reform:  http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/wherry-trudeau-electoral-reform-1.3811862

What we are asking you for is a debate about the merits of whether considering the concerns of “first past the post” along with the government’s promises, that a national referendum should be conducted on the issue. As part of the debate, you will need to research some alternatives, but we are asking that debates not engage in technical arguments about the merits of one particular proposed alternative vs. another. Please keep debates to the broader

Please keep debates to the broader issues by showing that:

  1. there are concerns with the current system that need to be addressed and
  2. that the issue is important enough to warrant a national referendum.


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