Leadership Review

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    Robert Jarman
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    FVC advocates for democratic nomination of candidates for public elections, as in, if you get more than 10% of the vote in a riding, you only get reimbursed for your constituency expenses if you were democratically nominated.

    Why should this principle just extend to ridings when parties have strong leaders?

    A party can only force out a leader through a leadership review. Most parties only have this once every 4 years or less often during the convention after an election where the party failed to form a government. The Federal NDP has a secret ballot among all delegates, which includes the federal executive, the party council, some delegates from their special interest commissions like LGTBQ, women, youth, etc, a few from associated labour groups, and the EDAs, at every single biennial convention as to whether or not to hold a leadership election, no matter what. And if a leader faces a split within the party, if they get less than a pretty strong supermajority (which should be fixed perhaps), they’ll resign and hold a new leadership election anyway, as it shows a party that cannot agree.

    Party caucuses which voted (in a non secret ballot) to allow for leadership reviews at the start of a parliamentary term also have the power to sack their leaders via a caucus review, but I cannot find any parties that have voted to allow this. It’s dangerous to do so given the lack of a secret ballot.

    Other parliamentary systems have stronger leadership reviews. Australia has a strong caucus and weak leader.

    Why not require a leadership review among all parties, say if they get less than 70% of the votes in favour of not holding a leadership election among a convention and if they get a majority of votes against them in a caucus review? Combined with other measures like proportional elections, democratic nominations (that in practice makes basically all elected MPs democratically nominated), party internal referendums on whether or not to adopt a coalition or confidence and supply agreement, secret ballots to select cabinet members if they form part of the coalition, secret ballots to select committee members, stronger elections for the committee chairs, fully adopting the provisions of the Reform Act for all caucuses with the election of their caucus chair, interim leader, and holding votes among the caucus as to whether or not to remove a member not allowing a leader to expel a member unilaterally, ending leadership vetoes over candidates, it would make the leader far more accountable to a broader group of people and does not give them basically a blank cheque?

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