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Home About Us Reports Final Report 2004 - Voting Counts: Electoral Reform for Canada

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Final Report

Voting Counts: Electoral Reform for Canada

Table of Contents
Letter of Transmittal



Executive Summary

Chapter 1: Introduction
    1.1 Canada’s Electoral System
    1.2 Democratic Reform and Electoral Systems
    1.3 Concerns with the Status Quo
    1.4 Objectives and Organization of this Report
Chapter 2: Reviewing Electoral Systems and Reform Proposals in Canada
    2.1 Introduction
    2.2 Families of Electoral Systems
      2.2.1 Plurality–Majority Systems
      2.2.2 Proportional Representation Systems
      2.2.3 Semi-PR Systems
    2.3 Electoral Reform in Canada
      2.3.1 Early Reform Efforts
      2.3.2 Post-1950 Electoral Reform Concerns
    2.4 Current Reform Proposals
      2.4.1 Diversity and Representation
      2.4.2 Distorted Election Results
      2.4.3 Voter Turnout
      2.4.4 Youth Participation
      2.4.5 International Precedents
    2.5 Electoral Reform and the Canadian Political Agenda
Chapter 3: Democratic Values and the Choice of Electoral System
    3.1 Systems and Values
    3.2 Evaluating Electoral Systems
    3.3 Criteria for Evaluating Electoral Systems
      3.3.1 Representation of Parties
      3.3.2 Demographic Representation
      3.3.3 Diversity of Ideas
      3.3.4 Geographic Representation
      3.3.5 Effective Government
      3.3.6 Accountable Government
      3.3.7 Effective Opposition
      3.3.8 Valuing Votes
      3.3.9 Regional Balance
      3.3.10 Inclusive Decision Making
    3.4 First-past-the-post: Time for Change
Chapter 4: Electoral Options for Canada
    4.1 Balancing Competing Factors
    4.2 Majoritarian Systems
      4.2.1 Two-round System
      4.2.2 Alternative Vote System
    4.3 Proportional Systems
      4.3.1 Single Transferable Vote System
      4.3.2 List-PR System
    4.4 Mixed Electoral Systems
      4.4.1 Mixed Member Majoritarian System
      4.4.2 Mixed Member Proportional System
      4.4.3 Germany’s Mixed Member Proportional System
      4.4.4 Scotland’s Mixed Member Proportional System
    4.5 Diversity and Representation
      4.5.1 Open Versus Closed Lists
      4.5.2 Women’s Representation
      4.5.3 Minority Group Representation
      4.5.4 Youth Representation
    4.6 Aboriginal People’s Representation in the New Electoral System
      4.6.1 New Zealand
      4.6.2 Maine
      4.6.3 Royal Commission on Electoral Reform and Party Financing
      4.6.4 Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples
    4.7 Electoral System Design Issues
      4.7.1 Including Diverse Voices: Thresholds
      4.7.2 Accountability: Double Inclusion
    4.8 Conclusion
Chapter 5: Implications of Adding an Element of Proportionality to Canada’s Electoral System
    5.1 Introduction
    5.2 The Impact of Minority or Coalition Governments on Political Decision Making
    5.3 Regionalism
    5.4 Two “Classes” of Representatives
    5.5 Government Formation and Accountability
    5.6 Administrative Costs
    5.7 Impact on the Public Service
    5.8 Conclusion: Setting the Bar for Electoral Reform
Chapter 6: The Process of Electoral Reform—Engaging Citizens in Democratic Change
    6.1 Electoral Reform and Citizen Engagement
    6.2 Support for Democratic Participation After Electoral Reform
    6.3 Conclusion
Conclusion: Reforming Electoral Democracy in Canada


Appendix A: Creation of Regions within Quebec and Ontario for a Mixed Member Proportional Electoral System

Appendix B: Public Consultation and Engagement Strategy

Appendix C: Bibliography

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