Ranked ballot system up for debate locally
Published Sunday, January 22, 2017 5:17PM EST
Last Updated Sunday, January 22, 2017 6:33PM EST
By 2018, Londoners could have a new voting process in place.
A ranked ballot system is one of the items up for discussion at Tuesday’s Corporate Services Committee meeting.
Voting with an X is the only method most Londoners are familiar with when casting their ballots.
But that process is now up for discussion, with some critics saying there's a more accurate and democratic solution. They say the ranked ballot system is a process that would ensure the winning candidate receive at least 50 per cent of the vote.
"This system would enable somebody to say, ‘This is my first choice, this is my second choice, this is my third choice’ and if you were voting for somebody that did not do well, then your second choice would start getting counted,” says former Western University political science professor Andrew Sanction.
So instead of marking your choice with an X, voters rank candidates in order of preference.
Coun. Josh Morgan says the results better reflect voter preference than the current First Past the Post method.
"I think that's what we ultimately want from our electoral system is the candidates who are most preferred to be the ones who win the election or the ones that serves on the public's behalf. So ultimately finding a system that allows for that is something that I'm very supportive of."
Other councillors, like Phil Squire, aren't as convinced.
"What would really make me uncomfortable is if someone's campaigning saying, ‘Look, I may not be your first choice as far as you're concerned, but I'd like to be your second choice or your third choice.’ I'm very uncomfortable with that."
Currently, no jurisdiction in Canada uses a ranked ballot system.
“I think London would be a great place to try this out. Why don't we be adventurous? Do something first, get some publicity for something good?” Sancton wonders.
During Tuesday's Corporate Services Committee meeting, the discussion of ranked ballots is expected to be a hot topic.