2014 03 24
Statement from the Official Opposition regarding the Unfair Elections Act
Official Opposition Democratic and Parliamentary Reform critic Craig Scott (Toronto—Danforth) made the following statement after his motion urging the Government to abandon proposals in C-23 was rejected:
“Despite growing opposition to its electoral reform bill, the Conservative government has pursued its efforts to adopt it with great haste and secrecy. As expected, they voted against my motion urging the House to reject this bill that endangers the very foundations of our democracy by prohibiting vouching, voter education programming by Elections Canada, and the use of voter cards as second pieces of identification. The Conservatives refused to agree to the removal of these parts from the bill that have nothing to do with real electoral fraud-- which this bill was originally supposed to be about.
“We will continue to expose the antidemocratic agenda of this government and its attempt to gain an advantage in the upcoming elections by limiting thousands of Canadians’ right to vote and undermining the electoral monitoring system. Our 8 town halls over the last two weeks across the country were packed with concerned citizens. More and more, Canadians are enraged by C-23; more and more, Canadians are engaged in our effort to stop it.
The NDP will continue its efforts to prevent the Unfair Elections Act from seeing the light of day. We want the bill to address the real problems affecting our electoral process – like the fraudulent phone calls found to have been connected to the Conservative database in the last election. The government has the responsibility to support Elections Canada in their role, not to weaken the institution, and increasing electoral participation requires transparency and consultation with other parties and with Canadians.
The NDP is the party working hardest to protect our democracy. Canadians deserve better.”