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Highlights of Justin Trudeau’s 32-point fix for democracy

What you need to know about today’s proposals


 
CORRECTS TO GATINEAU, QUE.Backed by Liberal candidates, Liberal Party Leader Justin Trudeau makes an announcement on fair and open government in Gatineau, Que. on Tuesday, June 16, 2015. Sean Kilpatrick/Canadian Press

CORRECTS TO GATINEAU, QUE.Backed by Liberal candidates, Liberal Party Leader Justin Trudeau makes an announcement on fair and open government in Gatineau, Que. on Tuesday, June 16, 2015. Sean Kilpatrick/Canadian Press

Highlights of a 32 item ‘restore democracy’ to-do list

1. Create a special, all-party parliamentary committee to study alternatives to the current first-past-the-post electoral system, including ranked ballots, proportional representation, mandatory voting and online voting. Within 18 months of taking power, introduce legislation to replace first-past-the-post, based on the committee’s recommendations.

2. Reform question period in the House of Commons so that one day each week would be devoted solely to grilling the prime minister.

3. Impose spending limits on political parties between elections, not just during election campaigns.

4. Appoint an equal number of men and women to cabinet and adopt a government-wide appointment policy to ensure gender parity and greater representation of aboriginal people and other minorities.

5. Create performance standards for services offered by the federal government, complete with streamlined application processes, reduced wait times and money-back guarantees.

6. Create individualized, secure online accounts for Canadians who want to access all their government benefits and review key documents.

7. Empower backbench MPs by allowing free votes on everything except legislation implementing election platform promises, budget measures and matters involving freedoms guaranteed in the charter of rights.

8. End partisanship in the Senate by creating an independent advisory body to recommend non-partisan nominees for appointment to the upper house.

9. Overhaul the Canada Revenue Agency’s operating practices, including proactively contacting Canadians who are not receiving tax benefits they’re entitled to and ending the “political harassment”of charities.

10. Stop Canada Post’s plan to end home mail delivery.

11. Strengthen access-to-information laws, including giving the information commissioner power to issue binding disclosure orders and expanding the law to apply to the Prime Minister’s Office and ministerial offices.

12. Create an all-party national security oversight committee to oversee the operation of security agencies.

13. End the practice of stuffing unrelated legislation into omnibus bills.

14. Repeal stiffer voter identification requirements and other elements of the Fair Elections Act.

15. Appoint an advertising commissioner to ensure government ads are non-partisan and related to actual government business.

16. Create an independent commission to organize leaders’ debates during election campaigns.

(The Canadian Press)


 

Highlights of Justin Trudeau’s 32-point fix for democracy

  1. More nonsensical fluff from The Dauphin. The SS Beat Harper battle ship has sailed and it is flying an orange NDP flag.

  2. Lots of stuff here that I like. If only the Libs hadn’t supported C-51… not enough here to outweigh that.

    Re #4: I have a hard time with quotas for jobs – esp. high ranking jobs such as the Cabinet. Pick your best – period. If you end up with a small pool of women or visible minorities elected, you run the risk of picking someone less qualified just to keep a balance – and that does no one any good. On the other hand, if you find you have a surplus of qualified women / minorities, there’s no reason why the number can’t be more than 50%.

    As long as your requirements for seeking the best doesn’t include the term “white male”, and you are sincere in looking for the best to do a given job, there should be no need for quotas.

    • I think before switching your vote just because of C51, you should look carefully at what will happen to C51 when Trudeau or Mulcair become PM. You will conclude that the same thing will happen: both men will repeal some sections of the law and replace them by something else which will be very similar. Mulcair has clearly said he will not repeal the whole Act. Both leaders took a different road to get to the same place. I can’t understand why people do not understand that.

      • Exactly, though Mulcair’s position on the bill was more principled. Still if you want the entire bill repealed I’m not sure who you vote for.

        That said, Mulcair has no monopoly on principle, given the ducking and weaving he has to do in Quebec over the niqab and other such issues.

  3. “Overhaul the Canada Revenue Agency’s operating practices, including proactively contacting Canadians who are not receiving tax benefits they’re entitled to”

    So Trudeau would have the government cold-calling Canadians trying to give them “benefits” that they clearly don’t require?

    Ya, I’m sure that budget will get balanced in short order….

    • They won’t be cold calling because they have access to their files. For example, if you have children and do not claim the child tax credit or a new child-related benefit, they could call you to ask if your circumstances have changed. If not, they can help you make the claim.

      • You don’t need to explain that to Bill. He knows that nobody is proposing cold-calling.
        His lying is involuntary.

  4. Betca the LPofC are kicking themselves in their collective “Butts” right about now for annointing this brain dead schmuck as their leader.

  5. Here’s my problem with what Trudeau’s selling – he has not actually committed to proportional representation. Trudeau’s preferred alternative to First Past the Post is the so-called Alternative Vote (a winner-take-all system used to elect the Australian House of Representatives).

    It addresses absolutely zero of the shortcomings associated with our own system (artificial majorities half the time, unstable and short-lived minority parliaments the other half of the time, over-exaggerated regionalism, under-representation of women and minorities), and Canadians have never expressed any interest in AV. By pledging to “look at” numerous systems, including the non-proportional AV, “after” they get elected and then to implement such a system without a referendum, Trudeau could in theory (and all likelihood) introduce something very different than what is currently being assumed.

    Supporters of electoral reform would do well to read the fine print. The NDP is the only major opposition party that supports real change.

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