Manitoba Greens call for proportional representation

Green Party Wolseley Candidate David Nickarz speaks about proportional representation, flanked by other Green Party officials. Michael Draven/Global News. Michael Draven/Global News

Manitoba’s Green Party wants to do away with first-past-the-post voting, instead replacing it with proportional representation.

In first-past-the-post, the candidate that receives the most votes wins the seat, whereas in proportional representative voting, parties gain seats based on the proportion of votes received.

“We are at a time of democratic crisis,” said Andrea Shalay, the Manitoba Green’s deputy leader and Union Station candidate. “So many Manitobans don’t vote because they feel like their vote doesn’t matter — that is a sign of (an) unhealthy democracy.”

Wolseley candidate David Nickarz would work toward implementing proportional representation if elected to the Manitoba legislature on Sept. 10, he said, while also aiming to create a more polite environment on the floor of the legislature.

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“When you implement proportional representation you get fewer majority governments. Legislators… will get used to working together more,” Nickarz said. “You’ll see much less of this policy lurch from one majority (government) to the other.”

Nickarz believes implementing proportional representation and creating a better working environment for MLAs would allow them to get more work done.

Green Party elected officials from Ontario and Prince Edward Island joined Shalay and Nickarz to make the announcement.

The Greens have never won a seat in the Manitoba legislature, although Nickarz came close in Wolseley in 2016.

WATCH (Aug. 14, 2019): Manitoba Green Party Leader James Beddome

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Manitoba Green Party Leader James Beddome

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