Quebec will not hold referendum on electoral reform

Quebec Justice Minister Sonia LeBel responds to the Opposition during question period December 5, 2018, at the legislature in Quebec City. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jacques Boissinot

Quebec is moving ahead with its plan for electoral reform but says it will not hold a referendum on the issue.

The Coalition Avenir Québec, the Parti Québécois and Québec Solidaire all agree with adopting mixed-member proportional representation, commonly referred to as MMP. It’s the same electoral system used in Germany and New Zealand.

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On Tuesday, Quebec Justice Minister Sonia LeBel announced $225,000 in funding for a non-partisan group called the New Democracy Movement in order to educate the public on this type of system.

LeBel said she will table a bill — “a bill that will have the largest consensus possible” — before Oct. 1, even though the Liberal Party is against this reform.

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LeBel also said that a referendum isn’t necessary.

“It’s not that we rule out the fact we have to consult, we rule out this way of consulting,” she said.

“We think that this is something that has to be explained, discussed, exchanged with the population. It’s not a matter of having a vote, being behind a little box and saying yes or no.”

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