Time to resurrect PR as viable option

Letters to the Editor (The Guardian)
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Editor: Now that we are hopefully all tired of talking about abortion again, how about some lighter summer reading — politics! I’m going to propose that we take proportional representation (PR) on P.E.I. out of the hypothetical realm and into the realm of serious consideration.

Sure, the Liberals look secure now, particularly with the PCs in such a mess. But what is going to inevitably happen is that one election, if not the next one, the one after that, the Liberals are going to lose, and the PCs are going to take every seat. Then we’ll have another 10-year one-party state, and so it goes, back and forth. Just like the present Liberal dynasty, they won’t take 100 per cent of the vote, but they’ll take virtually 100 per cent of the seats.

The idea is that under PR, the seats in the house would look more like the actual percentage of the vote the parties got in the election. I’m not proposing we copy a notoriously unstable model, like Italy, but something with a better reputation for stable, effective government, like New Zealand or Germany.

P.E.I. has a reputation for being slow to embrace change, but then again, we got used to single-member ridings, and we got used to roundabouts. I think we could get used to PR, too.

Stephen DeGrace,


Geographic location: Italy, New Zealand, Germany

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