Dear federal Liberal leadership candidates,
My name is Kyle
Hutton and I am the author of the blog Blunt Objects, President of the
Burlington Young Liberals Club, and a dedicated Liberal since I could
vote. But I am also a dedicated democrat, who holds the Canadian example
of democracy in high esteem as a stable, representative, and reasoned
institution that many of the nations in the world whose populations
don't have the right to vote and be represented fairly, as yourselves
and I have, all look up to.
Recently though, it seems that many
Canadians are being frustrated by our domestic politics, finding the way
they're being represented lacking, and often confused about how our
system of democracy actually works. The charity group Samara, which
discusses, advocates, and produces polling about democratic issues in
Canada, came out with a poll that notes that roughly 54% of Canadians don't believe Members of Parliament represent their views, along with many other disheartening findings.
of Canadians, however, believe that they represent the views of their
parties and leadership just fine - but this isn't an endorsement of the
parties in Ottawa. The Samara poll notes thatt many Canadians believe
the parties are out of touch, even undemocratic, and fail to represent
the average Canadian. Many former MPs, many of whom are your former
colleagues I suspect, hold similar views.
As you are all now
running, whether officially or unofficially so far, to become the next
leader of the Liberal Party, I am curious as to your positions on this.
How will you, as possibly the next leader of a party that purports to be
representative of Canadians, respond to the results of this poll, if
not the many similar stories and complaints you've heard from fellow
Canadians, and your own constituents? How will you change the Liberal
Party in response to the very real problem of a lack of faith in some of
the oldest institutions in this country? What steps will you take to
change the prevailing attitude among many Canadians that what we have
right now simply isn't working properly?
Or, very simply, can you change it? That is the crux of my question, and I'm very interested in hearing your ideas as potential leaders.
is an important question for my own decision in the upcoming leadership
race, but I suspect for many others as well. Its one we all need to ask, to ensure we don't lose this important democracy of ours, simply because our politicians became too out of touch with the average Canadian.