2020- 2022 Policy Process | Green Party of Canada
Where GPC membership collaborates to develop our policies
G21-P021 Implement Mandatory Voting in Canada
This proposal was discussed in the workshop during Phase 2 of the VGM. However, there was not enough time for this proposal to be voted on in plenary by the members during Phase 2. Therefore, this proposal will not be included in the ratification vote.
That the GPC will advocate for mandatory voting in order to strengthen and enhance participatory democracy. Achievable outcomes include better educated voters, candidates more transparent about their stance on controversial issues, greater voter turnout, and improved representation of marginalized populations.
As voting is a civic duty as well as a civic right, Canada will implement mandatory voting in order to strengthen and enhance participatory democracy and improve representation of marginalized populations.
- Increased voter turnout, diversifying representation of peoples’ views in government.
- Electoral agencies are spared the cost of getting out the vote.
- Parties can focus on the issues.
- Improved voter awareness of issues and political processes.
- Forces parties to appeal, not just to their base, but to the majority in order to win.
Supporting Comments from Submitter
Australia, where compulsory voting was first implemented in 1914, has enjoyed a voter turnout of 90-95%.
There's evidence to support that higher voter turnout results in political stability. Low voter turnout can increase the risk of political instability due to a crisis or leaders with hidden agendas.
Other countries which have instituted compulsory voting include Chile, Greece, Singapore, Brazil, Argentina and Ecuador.
Fowler, Anthony, Harvard University, 2013, Abstract, Electoral and Policy Consequences of Voter Turnout: Evidence for Compulsory Voting in Australia.
Participatory Democracy, Respect for Diversity
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