INDEPENDENT NEWS

Electoral Commission recommendations strengthen MMP

Published: Mon 13 Aug 2012 02:58 PM
Electoral Commission recommendations strengthen MMP
The Green Party is welcoming the recommendations of the Electoral Commission in the MMP Proposal Paper released today.
The recommendations from the Electoral Commission include abolishing the one electorate seat threshold and lowering the party vote threshold to 4%, continuing to allow dual candidacy, and possible solutions to the future balance of electorate and list seats.
"I'm really pleased that the underlying principles of fairness, proportionality and diversity are reflected in these recommendations from the Electoral Commission," Green Party electoral reform spokesperson Holly Walker said today.
Removing the one electorate seat threshold will make a big difference for fairness by making sure that the votes of people in some electorates are not given more weight than others.
"Abolishing the one electorate seat threshold and lowering the party vote threshold will help to reduce the number of 'wasted' votes, and ensure that everyone's votes count.
"Removing the one electorate seat threshold will make a big difference for fairness by making sure that the votes of people in some electorates are not given more weight than others."
The Electoral Commission have also highlighted the need to address the future ratio of list to electorate seats if current demographic trends continue.
"It's good that they have identified that the gradual erosion of list seats poses an unacceptable risk to proportionality and diversity. It's important that we think about what is an appropriate balance between increasing electorate seats as the population grows, and the total number of seats in our parliament."
Another recommendation from the Electoral Commission is that political parties should continue to have responsibility for the composition and ranking of candidates on their party lists.
"It is interesting that the Electoral Commission have chosen not to recommend greater public involvement in party lists. Our preference has always been for greater internal democracy and the Green Party will continue to empower our members to rank our candidates.
"The level of public engagement so far has been fantastic. I hope that the public continues to engage by submitting their thoughts on the proposals in this paper before 7 September with the principles of fairness, proportionality and diversity in mind," Ms Walker said.
ENDS

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