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‘Question is simple, you want a change or not?’: BC Greens on electoral reform

FILE: Former BC Green Party Leader Andrew Weaver. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito)
Summary

The BC Greens will be hosting a number of town halls as the electoral reform referendum approaches

Party leader Andrew Weaver says the question is simple: Do you want change or not?

Voting will begin Oct. 22 and will remain open until mid-November

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – BC Green Party Leader Andrew Weaver is hitting back at critics of proportional representation saying the issue isn’t a complicated one.

The party hosted a town hall in Vancouver on Sunday to try to sway undecided voters.

RELATED: Questions finalized for this fall’s referendum on electoral reform

Weaver says proportional representation, despite how it looks on paper, is actually quite simple.

“The whole issue is really not that confusing,” he says. “I mean, there are people who spent a lifetime in political science who love to go into the weeds of this, but for most people, the question is quite simple: Do you want a system that is proportional, or do you want a system that is the same?”

In less than a month, British Columbians will receive a mail-in referendum to decide if they want to keep the current system of first-past-the-post, or if they want to change to proportional representation.

Weaver says it’s hard to sway undecided voters as members of the BC Liberals voice their opposition.

“You can always criticize what you want, the bottom line is the first question is simple, you want a change or not? Yes, or no?”

RELATED: Think tank study pits proportional representation against first-past-the-post

In the coming weeks, Weaver says the Greens will continue to host a number of town hall meetings like the one on Sunday to answer any questions or address any concerns.

“As we get closer the mailing the ballot, which is you know, towards the end of October, you’ll see more and more events like this as we strive to actually engage voters when they’re actually getting the ballots,” he adds.

Ballots are expected to start arriving on Oct. 22. Voting will remain open until mid-November.

Weaver says change is “sorely” needed, noting more and more voters feel like their votes don’t matter.

“We know that there’s a lot of people who don’t vote, a lot of people who are disenfranchised, who view proportional representation as a means and ways to have their vote matter,” Weaver adds. “To get them and inspire them to actually come out and vote for what they want not against what they don’t want.”