LETTER: Tactical voting: pros and cons

"So for the moment, I will probably be "forced" to vote NDP, tactically, in the next federal election...."

For all the reasons recently set out by Bob Malcolmson of Nelson in his March 20th letter to the Nelson Star, Conservative gerrymandering has put Green Party supporters into a state of maximum discomfort in the forthcoming national election. Yes, it seems all but certain that to vote Green again in this election is to insure that a Bennett-like Conservative returns to Ottawa. And yes, the only hope of defeating the Harper candidate appears to require that all voters in our riding join to maximize the vote for NDP candidate, Wayne Stetski.

Greens have a few reasons to doubt Mr. Stetski’s ability to push solutions to the concerns that members of the Green Party so strongly feel. And yet, the NDP as a party is on record as being committed to electoral reforms that would allow all voters some proportional representation in parliament, whatever the riding in which they live and vote.

I am one of those Green Party members who have asked the party, for this election in particular, to avoid running candidates in a small number of “close” ridings where Green votes will clearly help split the vote and favour the election of Conservative candidates. I have asked the party to do this even if the Liberals and/or NDPs are unwilling to return the favour for a few Green candidates in ridings where the Green candidate stands a strong chance of winning. I have urged the Green Party to put the national interest ahead of the party interest. To date I have received no hints that the Green Party was or is willing to do this. Nor, it seems clear, is any other opposition party.

So for the moment, I will probably be “forced” to vote NDP, tactically, in the next federal election. If enough others do the same, we appear to have a chance to reverse the local gerrymander-factor. But my biggest concern is that if many Green supporters vote tactically, and if as a result the Green Party total vote drops nationally, then the future powers that be will claim that the Green Party deserves no seat at subsequent leader’s debates, nor any time to speak in parliament, even if Greens do elect a few more MPs in ridings other than ours, and even if the NDP were to form a minority government.

Sitting out the next election is not an option. Everyone needs to vote this time. It is just too bad that many of us in the Kootenay-Columbia riding, Greens, and even some Liberals, will have to pay a “poll-tax,” one that may take the form of a few ulcers.

Barney Gilmore

Kaslo

Just Posted

Downtown Automotive awarded for hiring practices

The annual award is handed out by the Kootenay Career Development Society

Castlegar, Grand Forks areas to see cleaner winter roads under new contract

YRB set to take over 10-year maintenance contract on Monday

VIDEO: Nelson Tennis Club’s new home opens

The revitalized courts above LVR had their grand opening Saturday

Purcell withdraws from Nelson council election

First-time candidate Heather Keczan has also withdrawn

U.S. Court upholds Teck pollution ruling

Teck appealed a previous decision that it must pay $8.25 million in Colville Confederated Tribes’ court costs

VIDEO: Rare close encounter with whale pod spotted off B.C. waters

Pod of southern resident orca whales breach within arms length of whale watchers

Rattie scores 3 as Oilers blank Canucks 6-0

Vancouver slips to 1-5 in exhibition play

Veterans Affairs ordered to take second look before supporting vets’ relatives

Liberal government ordered officials to adopt a more critical eye

Dead B.C. motorcyclist was member of group that raced down mountain road

Some group members record their rides on Strathcona Parkway and post times to page

Indigenous athletes in spotlight at BC Sports Hall of Fame

New gallery to feature Carey Price, Kaila Mussel and Richard Peter

B.C. couple who went missing on flight from Edmonton named by family

Family released a statement Wednesday saying they’re still intent on finding the two-seater plane

VIDEO: A close look at what you were breathing during the B.C. wildfire season

Electron microscope images show soot and tar particles generated by worst B.C. fire season

B.C. woman donates $250,000 to ovarian cancer research for friends

Two of Patty Pitts’s friends passed away from the disease within a year

B.C. could provide clues as to how New Brunswick electoral results shake out

Premier Christy Clark faced a strikingly similar scenario following the province’s 2017 election

Most Read