April 24, 2011
Media release: Communist Party Protests Exclusion from April 20 Debate on Democratic Reforms
Fair Vote? Maybe Not, Eh?
The Communist Party of Canada has been excluded from participating in an important debate on democracy, on April 20. The event, organized by Fair Vote Canada and Canadians Advocating Political Participation, is titled “Our Parliament is Dysfunctional” and is being held at St. Paul’s Church in Toronto (227 Bloor Street East) at 7 pm.
The CPC has issued the following statement and is encouraging all supporters of democracy to attend the debate and to insist that the organizers include representatives from all parties.
Just Like Parliament,
THIS DEBATE IS DYSFUNCTIONAL !!
(BUT YOU COULD HELP FIX BOTH…)
The organizers of this meeting, Fair Vote Canada and Canadians Advocating Political Participation, have decided to limit participation to only the four largest political parties in English speaking Canada.
This excludes many parties whose ideas are key if the public discussion during this election is to be full, broad, and critical. This is an outrageous move by groups that claim to advocate for democratic changes to our electoral system.
A Fair Vote means democracy!
Democracy and equality mean inclusion. We reject two-tier democracy!
One of the parties who has asked to participate in this debate is the Communist Party of Canada, the second oldest party in Canada. The Communist Party should participate in this debate because:
* The Communist Party is a member of Fair Vote, who participated in its founding conference.
* The Communist Party has campaigned for decades to have Proportional Representation in Canada, to make Canada’s electoral system more democratic, more representative and more responsive.
* In 2003, the Communist Party won a historic victory for democracy in Canada, by successfully challenging draconian changes to the Elections Act that required parties to field 50 candidates and pay a non-refundable $50,000 in each election, or face deregistration and seizure of assets.
But, despite this strong record of fighting for democracy, and the same kinds of electoral reforms that Fair Vote and CAPP propose, the Communist Party is being excluded from this debate on democracy. Ironically, parties who have repeatedly blocked democratic reform – and who voted for the Elections Act changes that we fought – are enjoying a position on the podium, and the chance to repeat their sorry excuses for maintaining the exclusive, undemocratic, elitist status quo.
Your vote is important. Democracy is important.
Tell the organizers this must be an inclusive, democratic debate.
The Communist Party of Canada stands for democratic electoral reform:
* Proportional representation in all federal and provincial elections
* Right of voters to recall elected representatives
* Significantly reduced spending limits on election campaigns
* Lower the voting age to 16
* Ensure equal opportunities for all candidates and parties in candidate meetings, televised debates and media coverage
On May 2, cast the strongest vote for peace, jobs, democracy and sovereignty!
Authorized by Official Agent CPC
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