Like thousands of Ontarians, I voted last night. We are fortunate to have fair and democratic methods in place for the selecting of political representation. My concern is with the nature of our political system and the ballots used to poll the electorate.
Although we were choosing a Premier for our province, we don't actually vote for the Premier. If you wanted Dalton McGuinty to become Ontario's Premier, you would vote for the MPP candidate from McGuinty's Liberal Party in your riding. Essentially, you're electing a political party, not necessarily an individual. Here's the problem. The ballot simply listed the names of those running in your riding. The names are listed in alphabetical order with no party affiliation identified. If you entered the voting booth wanting to cast your vote for Ernie Eve's Progressive Conservative Party, you had to know who on the ballot represented his Party.
Considering the fact our vote for an MPP is actually a vote for that Party's leader to become Premier of Ontario, shouldn't the candidate's Party be included on the ballot? Doesn't this make sense? The goal is make it as clear as possible for the voter so they are best able to cast their vote the way they want to, isn't it? Ideally, everyone would know the actual name of the candidate they are voting for, but I'm sure many just knew whether they wanted to vote for McGuinty, Eves or Hampton. The ballots I saw yesterday would leave these people in the dark.
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