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This is not democracy
The idea of representative democracy is simple. Citizens elect their representatives. The majority win the right to make decisions. Or as Ernest Naville wrote in 1865: "In a democratic government, the right of decision belongs to the majority, but the right of representation belongs to all."
Does Canada actually have representative democracy? In the 2008 federal election:
- 940,000 voters supporting the Green Party elected no one, while fewer Conservative voters in Alberta alone elected 27 Conservative MPs.
- In the prairie provinces, Conservatives received roughly twice the votes of the Liberals and NDP combined, but took seven times as many seats.
- Similar to the last election, a quarter-million Conservative voters in Toronto elected no one and neither did Conservative voters in Montreal.
- New Democrats: The NDP attracted 1.1 million more votes than the Bloc, but the voting system gave the Bloc 49 seats, the NDP 37.
What about majority rule? Canadians are usually ruled by majority governments that the majority voted against. In some provincial elections, parties coming in second in the popular vote have won majority control of the legislature.