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What Would Happen If There Were No More Hypothetical Questions?

April 2011
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This is my next submission to the CBC Your Take election blog.

Breaking News from the CBC Your Fake blog.

Godzilla has emerged from the Yukon River and eaten all four candidates for the Yukon riding. Elections Canada tells Yukoners to vote anyway and a candidate will be appointed by the winning party after the election.

I’m assuming, by now, that you’ve figured out that this is a hypothetical situation. But, what would you do in this case? How do you deal with removing completely personalities from the election?

Let’s start by asking the following questions.

  • Do you know who you would vote for?
  • Would you vote the same way as you would if the original candidates were still in the running?
  • Would you still vote?
  • What criteria would be the defining ones for making your choice?

A recent Nanos poll has put the key reason for deciding on a specific candidate as being party policy, as opposed to the leader, the local candidate and voting for a traditional party, in that order. I’m not sure I trust the accuracy of a sample of 1200 people who haven’t gotten around to ditching their land line. I’m even less sure that it has a chance of representing a fair picture of Canadian opinion. However, granting a little bit to the possible accuracy of the poll, I find the idea that the actual candidate places third in the list of reasons for voting specifically alarming.

Remember who it is you elect on May 2nd. You elect your local representative and that is all. This is the person who represents you to the government of Canada and, as such, picking that person is an extremely important decision. In Canada, we don’t elect a government, a party or a Prime Minister. Those things get dealt with after the election and are subject to change without notice in a variety of legal and legitimate possibilities.

So put a little thought into how you would choose your next Member of Parliament. Ignore the partisan rhetoric and hyperbole and ask yourself who you would most want to represent you. Take the time and effort (as ridiculously little as it takes) to make your choice for that person at the polls.

And, don’t worry. I don’t think the river is deep enough to hide Godzilla…

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