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LETTER: Local Green Party supporter warns of strategic voting

If your only goal in voting in this election is to prevent Justin Trudeau or Erin O'Toole from winning, your vote has failed, says letter writer
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OrilliaMatters welcomes letters to the editor. Send your letters to dave@orilliamatters.com. This letter is from a local Green Party supporter who is urging people to vote their conscience on Election Day.
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Election Day is almost upon us with less than a week to go. 

I have spent many hours on the campaign trail and Simcoe North has six distinct and unique candidates to choose from, all willing to serve. During my trips to people’s doors and listening to what people are voting for, two things continue to pop up more than any issues: 

  1. We need to get rid of (Prime Minister Justin) Trudeau. 
  2. We can’t let (Conservative Leader Erin) O’Toole get elected. 

This is the very essence of what is referred to as strategic voting. This failed mentality that we elect parties out rather than electing them in. 

I am always happy to have a political discussion with anyone from any background and if you truly have honest conviction in the platform of any party and are willing to defend their positions, I am willing to have an honest, frank and open respectful discourse with them. 

But to simply state you want a politician gone, without understanding the full merits of their positions, let alone the proposed alternative, you’re really depriving yourself and others of what could be other great potential leaders that can bring new ideas and perspectives to Ottawa. 

Statistically speaking for those that do believe in strategic voting, the fact is that on the national stage, it is almost a certainty that Justin Trudeau will remain Prime Minister. Erin O’Toole is likely to win the popular vote, but Trudeau is still well statistically ahead with the seat count. 

And in the unlikely event that O’Toole can get ahead of Trudeau on the seat count, the likelihood is that Trudeau would attempt to create a coalition with either the NDP or the Greens depending on numbers to keep the office of Prime Minister. 

If your only goal in voting in this election is to prevent one of these two leaders from winning, your vote has failed. What some may not understand about your vote also is that your vote carries more weight than just who becomes Member of Parliament and which party is given a mandate. 

In Canada, parties are required to stay above 4% of the national vote in order to stay in the federal leaders debate.  If you want a voice to be heard at that table, it is imperative to get your vote out to keep those voices in the game. 

Likewise, per vote subsidy. Parties that achieve above 2% of the vote will get a subsidy back to go towards future funding of campaigns, while local Electoral District Associations need to stay above 5% to get that local funding and while that may not matter to Liberals and Conservatives, once again that keeps the smaller voices in the game and able to be heard. 

If your heart is with Conservatives or Liberals, then by all means vote your heart, but I urge everyone to vote their conscience in this election. 

Do not vote for the federal leaders, because they will not represent you locally.  Learn the local candidates, who they are and what they can do for you and vote for who you believe will represent you and your issues the best. 

Support local, but above all, make your voice heard. Voting counts on many levels and we need as many voices at the table to continue diverse conversations and coming up with solutions that work for everyone. 

Mathew Lund
Orillia

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