Have an opinion you’d like to share? Submit letters to the editor through our website, via email or the postal service. (Black Press Media files)

Have an opinion you’d like to share? Submit letters to the editor through our website, via email or the postal service. (Black Press Media files)

LETTER: Proposed Pitt Meadows-Fort Langley riding undemocratic

Federal riding would lump parts of five municipalties together

Dear Editor,

Re: [Riding redraw a muddle, The News, May 6]

The two incoherent ridings being proposed to contain Pitt Meadows and Maple Ridge voters in a pen with voters from a number of different municipalities are an affront to our democratic rights as citizens.

The fundamental premise of our electoral system is that citizens in a riding elect a person they know to represent the interests of their community.

How are voters across a riding that contains parts of a number of very different communities going to get to know which candidate will represent them best? And how will the successful candidate get to know the communities they are supposed to represent?

Our democracy is already flawed enough without making it even worse. It’s already bad enough that top-down party marketing machines promote the leader and the party brand instead of the qualities of their local candidate.

And that the successful candidate is subject to party discipline, and is expected to vote the party line, even if it contradicts what the community which elected them wants.

These two flaws in our democracy will be greatly exacerbated for citizens of Pitt Meadows and Maple Ridge if these incoherent ridings are imposed on us.

This new electoral boundary scheme stinks of top down herding of the electorate, not democratic representation. We need more democracy, not more partyocracy.

Steve Ranta, Maple Ridge

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