Former B.C. premier warns against change to proportional representation

Ujjal Dosanjh is urging voters to say No to a referendum on proportional representation

Former British Columbia premier Ujjal Dosanjh is urging voters to say No to a referendum on proportional representation because he believes it will usher in extremist parties like those in some European countries.

RELATED: Electoral reform vote in B.C. includes $500,000 each for pro and con groups

Dosanjh says Germany, the Netherlands and Hungary require very low percentages of people to vote in candidates with racist views, and that has changed their political landscape in a negative way.

The former New Democrat premier says the party he once led is proposing a proportional representation system that would allow five per cent of voters to elect extremist members of the legislature.

B.C. voters will be asked if they want to switch to proportional representation and if they do, they will be required to rank one of three systems, two of which have never been tried anywhere.

RELATED: Vernon group urges fair vote

Dosanjh is backing a group vying for funding to campaign against proportional representation before a referendum to be conducted by mail-in ballot between Oct. 22 and Nov. 30.

He says the current first-past-the-post system is simple, as opposed to the proposed system, which he calls confusing and complicated.

The Canadian Press

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