Re: Election reform needs big push, March 11 letters.
When letter-writer D.L. Randall claims that the current electoral system, first-past-the-post, is flawed, she is right. But when she claims that our B.C. referendum allowed support for “proportional representation” (PR), she is dead wrong.
The system on the referendum ballots was the single transferable vote (STV).
And STV is absolutely not PR. While there are myriad folks intent on promoting STV as PR, no one has ever provided a molecule of justification, because there is none.
There are at least 10 reasons why STV is not PR. Here is just one:
PR means that the percentage of total votes that a party receives entitles it to elect in the parliament close to the same percentage of party candidates… percentage party votes equals percentage party seats.
STV has no votes for parties, just votes for individual candidates and hence no mechanism for determining percentage votes cast for a party, essential for PR elections.
Additionally, many votes in BC-STV are fragmented and transferred hither and yon among candidates down to tiny fragments of seven decimal places of one vote. Electoral reform… maybe. But STV… never!
David Poole, Surrey