Who do you Vote for?

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Polls have indicated that people don’t have an issue that sticks out this go around like past elections, it’s not about health care, or the environment, or even the economy despite the Liberal and NDP fear mongering. These issues all poll out evenly. So what can the parties focus on as the key issue this election?

Leadership.

This isn’t surprising to me, for the last few elections people have asked whether the party leaders or local candidates should be their main concern when at the polls. Is it more important to vote based on which party leader you like, or which of your local candidates appeals to you the most.

In the past I’ve based my vote on a mix of the two. The last provincial election, my first in London, I voted based on the leader of the party (Liberal) as I wasn’t familiar with the local candidates as well as I should have been. The previous provincial election it was a mix, I lived in the NDP leaders (Howard Hampton) riding and the other local candidates were weak offerings.The last federal election though I decided to vote for the preferable local candidate (Green) helped by a desire to not support Paul Martin and knowing the incumbent local, who I also liked, would be re-elected anyways.

But what about this election? How will I vote, how will you vote?

In my riding London North Center I’m presented with four choices. The incumbent Liberal Glen Pearson, who is the strongest of the group and has a rather interesting background. The Green and NDP candidates are fairly lacking in experiance and self confidence, and the Conservative candidate is the parties script reader write in.

As for the party leaders only Stephen Harper seems to have any sort of air of leadership about him. The Liberals have been on the losing end since electing Dion as leader, he does grow on you if you see him in person a few times but that’s not enough. Layton and the NDP have been trying to pull up the middle, but smell of desperation and lack fresh ideas of their own. Lastly the Green’s Elizabeth May who came in second during a by-election in London North Center isn’t likely to do well, but it would be nice to have an alternative to the NDP. Furthermore The Undecided tells me my beliefs are 41% in line with the Greens, 24% for the Conservatives, 21% with the NDP, and 7% with the Liberals.

So with that said, do I vote for my local preference Liberal Glen Pearson despite Dion’s poor performance, or vote for Stephen Harper despite the lackluster local candidate, or what a website tells me is my political leanings with the Green Party despite their awful Local candidate and Leader.

In the end does it even matter who your local candidate is anyways? Despite how you may feel about an issue and how your candidate feels the best they can often do in Parliament is not show up for a vote they oppose for fear of punishment by the party for voting against the whip.

Maybe it’s time we changed out electoral system.

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2 Responses to “Who do you Vote for?”

  1. Carmi Says:

    I miss the Rhinoceros Party. If I can’t trust politicians – and let’s face it, they’re all as trustworthy as the guy standing in the shadows while you lock up your bike beside the office – then I should at least be amused by them.

    Looking at the sorry slate of choices this time out, I can’t help but feel that Canadians deserve better.

  2. fowgre Says:

    One of the worst things about party politics is the way that it takes away individual choice from our representatives. They must toe the party line unless they can get a special dispensation from on high. At the same time, it discredits the effectiveness of independents in the mind of the public, ie. the fear that they would simply sit there in Ottawa without being able to get sufficient support to achieve anything. So maybe what we need is the Independence Party with a main platform of allowing it’s members to express their heartfelt opinion and vote the way that they want on any issue.

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