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Make the most of crucial vote - STV campaigners

Make the most of crucial vote - STV campaigners

The Electoral Reform Coalition is urging Christchurch residents to vote for STV (single transferable vote) in the postal referendum that starts today.

“Having successfully earned the right to change the voting system we now urge the people of Christchurch to back STV,” said Electoral Reform Coalition chair Rod Donald.

“There’s no contest when you compare STV with first past the post (FPP). STV delivers more value for your vote, fair representation on the council and majority mayors.

“For the voter it is as easy as 1 – 2 – 3 because all you have to do is rank as many of the candidates as you like in your own order of preference.

“The key to STV is that if your first choice is unsuccessful or is already elected then your vote transfers to your second choice instead of being wasted. It also means that you can vote positively for whom you really want without any risk of splitting the vote.”

Rod Donald said that first past the post didn’t meet the needs of modern society.

“First past the post is a perfect system when there are only two horses in the race, but it falls down whenever there are more candidates seeking to represent our diverse community.

“At the last election more than 60% of the votes made no difference to the result, either because they were wasted on unsuccessful candidates or not needed by those already elected.

“The mayor won with only 43% of the vote and one political group won 33% of the seats with only 21% of the vote while another ticket won 35% of the vote but only 29% of the seats.

“It makes sense to switch to STV because district health board elections will use this system from the next election. Wellington voters have already chosen STV in their referendum and I hope Christchurch will too,” said Rod Donald.

Voting papers will arrive in the next few days and voters have until 5 April to cast their ballot. The Electoral Reform Coalition is delivering a leaflet to every home in Christchurch and has put up over 200 billboards around the city.

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