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Real Change – democratic reform package released by Liberals gets attention.

Yesterday in Ottawa, Justin Trudeau and over 160 candidates (including my friend and candidate for Brantford-Brant Danielle Takacs) released a set of 32 democratic reform proposals called “Real Change”, which would significantly overhaul how democratic institutions and process work in the country. Everyone knows I’m a Liberal supporter, so hearing I’m excited about these would not be surprising to anyone (particularly the part that says our current electoral model of First Past The Post will be our last in 2015). So let’s look at the reaction of some more non-partisan, even cynical folks out there.

-Paul Wells on Twitter and a more fleshed out version at Macleans

– The former Chief Electoral Officer, Jean-Pierre Kingsley, welcomed the proposals.

Vice News Justin Ling was very impressed with some proposals (Access to Information request/access in this case) , and says the Liberals have jumped ahead of the NDP in democratic reform initatives/proposals.

Professor Emm Mcfarlane of Policy Options offers praise of most of the package, but has fair questions about some other aspects.

– The Toronto Star approves. The Globe, as I’d expect, more cautiously so (The Globe never has been a big proponent of changing the FPTP electoral model). The National Post editorial called it a “bold reform plan”

Michael Den Tandt of the National Post said Justin Trudeau (and to be fair, he mentioned Mulcair as well) utterly changed political Canada in one day. This is good. Den Tandt’s quote on Trudeau:

“Trudeau’s speech was unremarkable in its delivery. But the content, and the subsequent question-and-answer session with reporters, were anything but. The Liberal leader unveiled a series of 32 proposals, many of which singly, if implemented, would transform Canadian democracy.”


7 comments to Real Change – democratic reform package released by Liberals gets attention.

  • MoS

    Scott, you’re consummately Liberal. When you come up with something this good, you refuse to capitalize on it by pummeling your opposition, on both sides. I do wish you well but you’re not close to getting me to leave the Greens to return. Think of PET’s scummy campaign in 1974 when he did the gunman skit, “zap, you’re frozen” to destroy not only Bob Stanfield but panic the union vote to desert Davis Lewis and shit LPC out of sheer, irrational fear. I’ll wait – and see. It does sound awfully good.

  • Well, Scott your reply to Liam sounded rather naive I think. Politicians makes such promises all the time and don’t mean it, like Harper promising transparency! (Or that he wouldn’t appoint Senators) However, these reforms are all fairly good ideas. But one surely has to question his commitment to them considering his failure to support the NDP only a few months ago on electoral reform. Of course, if the Liberals only instituted half of these reforms it would be good for the country and potentially game changing, However, even in terms of strategic voting Trudeau’s support of C-51 guarantees that I will under no circumstances vote Liberal in the next election. You simply can’t sell out democracy in one breath and then claim you are going to save it in the next. As far as I am concerned Trudeau is finished, and I suspect many agree with me.

  • Liam Young

    Only when the Liberals flail around in third do they talk about democratic reform. They have been handed this opportunity many times in Canada’s history, but covet their majority when/if they get one. What’s to make us believe they will come through this time?
    Nothing short of a contract in writing will get me to vote for Justin Trudeau.
    It’s Mulcair’s turn to test the waters.

    • You don’t publish a list of 32 reforms and specifically say things like “2015 is our last election under FPTP” or that the Access to Information Act will be broadened if you didn’t mean it.

      • Marshall

        Scott, As a pragmatic senior voter who always votes for the candidate most likely to defeat the Conservative menace (recent description…. they were once sort of progressive), I have seen enough election promises thrown to the wayside, post election by every political stripe, to be cynical of any pre-election promises. IMHO (seniors can be hip too) the best federal government we ever had was the Pearson minority. Progressives working together always are a winning combination!

  • Gayle

    For what it is worth, a friend who decided to abandon the LPC after C51, is now back in the fold. Anecdotes are not evidence, but I certainly hope she’s not alone.

    These are good measures. I am not sure how many people care about these initiatives, but they are certainly getting attention. This is the stuff I am looking for, so I am very pleased.

  • Its about time the Liberal Party got with the program and adopted policies the Pirate Party has been suggesting for years.

    Now if only they would take intellectual property law behind the shed a shoot it.

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