Today, Doug Ford is trying to take away power from the people of Ontario.
Taking away the option of ranked ballots makes our democracy worse. It reduces the political voice of voters. It reduces the likelihood of new people seeking to serve as elected representatives at the municipal level.
The only people who benefit from taking away ranked ballots are incumbent politicians.
Back in 2018, London was the only municipality in Ontario to implement ranked ballots (read more in this report from Unlock Democracy). Ranked ballots allowed tens of thousands of Londoners to rank their preferences for mayor and council elections. It worked well and it encouraged new people to run for council, including the first Black woman elected to London's city council.
Kingston and Cambridge voted in 2018 to move ahead with ranked ballots in 2022.
It does cost a little bit more to collect much more information about who people support. That is the cost of a stronger local democracy.
The previous Liberal government empowered people by making ranked ballots an option at the municipal level. They gave people a choice. By taking that power away, by moving to collect less rather than more information from voters, Doug Ford is protecting incumbent politicians.
The Ontario PC Party itself uses ranked ballots. Doug Ford was elected Leader by a ranked ballot. If ranked ballots are good enough for his own party, surely they are good enough for the people of Ontario.
This change has been tacked on to the pandemic-related "Supporting Ontario's Recovery Act, 2020." If London is forced to switch back to first-past-the-post, we will incur new one-time costs.
It is clear that this move is really about stopping electoral reform from spreading.
If you oppose this move to take ranked ballots away as an option, please add your name and share this petition.
You may also want to call Premier Ford's office at 416-325-1941.
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