Electoral systems expert David Huntley has sent Fair Voting British Columbia executive members a petition demanding they apologize and resign. This, after British Columbians voted overwhelming on May 12 against the single-transferable vote system. At issue: according to the petition, the executive - which was responsible for organizing the campaign in favour of that system - ignored "clear professional advice" which would have given former citizens' assembly on electoral reform members a leading role on the yes side. The petition, which also criticizes Fair Voting British Columbia for not responding to "misleading information provided by no-stv" - has been signed ten individuals. Among them is Craig Henschel - one of the members of the assembly that recommended British Columbians adopt BC-STV. The following is a complete copy, which was exclusively obtained by Public Eye.
To: The Directors of Fair Voting British Columbia
May 23, 2009
We, the undersigned, call on the Fair Voting BC executive to issue a formal public apology to:
- those who were members of the BC Citizens' Assembly on Electoral Reform
- the Citizens of British Columbia
- the Citizens of Canada
Then all the members of the FVBC board should resign.
This should be done forthwith, and the apology should be wholehearted.
The wording of the formal apology from the directors should include:
- that they had received clear professional advice that "The ONLY way this kind of reform can pass in Canada is when it is proposed by experts who are not part of the usual political world", in this case the BC Citizens' Assembly on Electoral Reform.
- that the professional advice contained more valuable information
- that they chose to ignore all this advice
- what the campaign strategy was and why they used it
- that they chose not to respond to the misleading information provided by no-stv.
- that the referendum was ultimately about which side had the better campaign and not about the merits of BC-STV. The public needs to know that it is the no-stv system that was rejected, not the true BC-STV.
- BC-STV as recommended overwhelmingly by the BC Citizens' Assembly on Electoral Reform is the best electoral system for British Columbia
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