Doug Ford must be a little surprised. In the few short hours since his government introduced a bill to strip Ontario municipalities of their ability to use ranked ballots for their election, opposition and anger have erupted from all sides. Conservatives, Liberals, New Democrats, and Greens are all denouncing this attack on local democracy. We’ve also just learned that Councillor Shelley Carroll will be introducing a motion at Toronto City Council requesting that the provincial government cancel this attempted ban. We understand that Kingston City Council is also introducing a similar motion.
We really don't know what to say. Yesterday we learned that Premier Ford and his government are introducing a bill at Queen’s Park that would, without a breath of consultation or any credible justification, strip Ontario municipalities of the ability to use a ranked ballot for their own elections.
Just a few minutes ago, near the end of a marathon three-day city council meeting, we won a critical victory. We won’t be getting ranked ballots as quickly as we had hoped, but thanks to you, we successfully defeated a last ditch attempt to stop moving ranked ballots forward.
Supporters of ranked ballots have already sent hundreds of messages to Mayor Tory and various members of city council asking them to defend ranked ballots and to proceed with public consultations.
But we still need your help. While the final decision on whether to go ahead with consultations will take place at a meeting of city council on Wednesday, 30 September, there was a meeting of council’s Executive Committee last week which did not go well for us as the majority of that committee voted to not proceed with consultations.
A Path to Adoption of Ranked Ballots for the 2022 Election
RaBIT’s Response to the City of Toronto Clerk’s Report “The Impact of COVID-19 on 2022 Election Preparation Activities”
To read the full detailed response, click here.
The last time we sent out a newsletter was February 2020, and the world looked very different. We know that many in our community have faced significant challenges and loss during this difficult time and we want to thank all of you who have stepped up to provide support and solidarity to others in need.
A belated Happy New Year! We hope that 2020 has started well for you and yours.
As we mentioned in our last message, 2020 is going to be a huge year for RaBIT and we need your help to keep moving voting reform forward here in Toronto.
A few weeks ago, we told you about a meeting of Toronto City Council’s Special Committee on Governance. We told you that this meeting was an opportunity for councillors to direct city staff to write a report that would provide city council and Torontonians with all the information needed to make an informed decision on whether to switch to ranked ballots for the 2022 election.
When it came time to vote, however, there was a tie at the committee meeting, with Councillors Carroll and Perks voting in favour of the report and Councillors Crawford and Holyday voting against the report. Unfortunately, a tie means the motion is defeated.
While a setback, this vote is not the end of the road. That’s because the results of the committee’s deliberations must now be approved – or amended – by the entire City Council. This will happen at the next council meeting which is taking place on Tuesday and Wednesday, 26-27 November.