Across Canada, by far the most common subject of possible reform is the voting system, specifically changes to the so-called “electoral formula.” The two main alternatives that have been advanced in Canada are proportional representation and ranked voting. These correspond to two separate complaints about the plurality voting system, the incumbent model at the federal level and in all 10 provinces at the time of writing: 1) there are times great disparities between a political party’s share of the popular vote and its share of the seats int he federal parliament or a provincial legislature, and 2) that candidates need not receive a majority of votes in a district to win, but only to win a plurality.

Fair and Equal Representation: Nova Scotia’s Electoral Boundaries Dispute by Ross Haynes, QC, discusses how to find the right balance between effective representation and accommodation of minority interests and the fundamental right to equality remains a dominant theme in all aspects of the debate on democratic reform. This new study from AIMS responds to proposals meant to answer these concerns as well as their subsequent critics by making the case that equal representation for all citizens is the most rational and straightforward ideal.

Read the full study here

Read the study

Ross Haynes