Rarely does an election – or party leadership change – go by when someone doesn’t get out their calculator and attempt to convince us the winning candidate’s mandate is tainted or illegitimate because they failed to achieve a majority of votes. Kim Manning’s letter in the Oct. 13 Outlook did not disappoint in this regard.
Ms. Manning writes “our current premier was elected by pretty much exactly one per cent of our population.” That statement is both misleading and factually incorrect. It’s misleading because elected officials are chosen as a result of votes cast by eligible voters only, not the population at large. Eligible voters who willingly choose not to vote, don’t count, nor do minors as they are not eligible to vote.
It’s factually incorrect because as a parliamentary democracy, we don’t elect premiers and prime ministers. We vote for and elect local representatives. The leader of the party with the most local representatives becomes the premier. In this case, Danielle Smith. If Justin Trudeau steps down as leader of the Liberal Party of Canada – a boy can only dream – his replacement will immediately become the prime minister. No election is required.