03 November 2010

Will Campbell Resignation Mean Restoration of Democratic Process?

British Columbians' loathing for Gordon Campbell was not due primarily to the various policies he implemented, such as the carbon tax, the HST, the latest-announced 15 percent income tax cut, the cuts to public services and programs, the sale of BC Rail, etc., etc., etc. The chief cause of people's loathing was Campbell's circumvention of democratic process.

It was his lying to the electorate. It was his doing after elections what he intimated during elections he would not do. The sale of BC Rail and the introduction of the HST come most immediately to mind.

While I've written in favour of BC's HST, its carbon tax and further reductions to income tax (with concomitant increases in consumption taxes), I can't support a government that stomps all over the rights of its citizens to have their votes properly represented.

Of course, such rights also require electoral reform. But even with our present system, surely British Columbians can reasonably expect not to be lied to.

Otherwise, what's the point in voting? What's the point in supporting a party or a candidate if you can't be sure they'll keep their word? Or minimally, that they will exercise due democratic process either to change the minds of voters' representatives or the minds of the voters themselves?

I can live with policy I disagree with. I won't live with a government, premier, party or party leader who tramples over the democratic rights of myself and my fellow citizens.

Gordon Campbell did the right thing by resigning. He should have done it long ago. So should Colin Hansen. And so should the NDP's Carole James.

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