Rick Mercer: Online Voting Needs To Be Considered By Conservatives

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Rick Mercer again mocked Conservatives' controversial Fair Elections Act with another classic rant Tuesday night. (YouTube/CP)
Rick Mercer again mocked Conservatives' controversial Fair Elections Act with another classic rant Tuesday night. (YouTube/CP)

Canadians can bank, pay their taxes, and even find a potential spouse online.

They just can't vote that way.

And the fact that the Harper government would seek to reform Canada's election laws without seriously discussing online voting doesn't make any sense to CBC comedian Rick Mercer.

In the season finale of the Rick Mercer Report on Tuesday, Mercer again mocked Conservatives' controversial Fair Elections Act with a classic rant.

Mercer called the name of the bill "ironic" and accused Tories of concluding that making voting more difficult is the best way to handle historic lows in voter turnout.

"Gotta hand it to them," he said, sarcastically. "Did not see that coming."

But while the bill has sparked plenty of debate over the past two months, Mercer zeroed in on what's seemingly not being discussed.

"How is it possible in 2014, in a bill that deals with how we can vote, was there absolutely no discussion of online voting?" he asked.

Mercer conceded that he is one of many Canadians who is nervous about the idea, preferring to mark an 'x' with a pencil.

"And do you know what that makes me? A dinosaur," he said.

Mercer said young Canadians — "some of the most wired people on the planet" — will love the idea of casting a ballot online. After all, he said, if millions of young people have never had to ask someone for a phone number in person because "there's an app for that," how can Tories expect the thrill of voting to get them out of the house.

"The government has a responsibility to make voting available wherever Canadians live. And yes, all Canadians reside in a riding but young Canadians, they live online," Mercer said. "If we let them pay taxes there, let them vote there."

This isn't the first time Mercer has ranted about the Tories' proposed overhaul of Canada's election laws.

Back in February, Mercer said the Fair Elections Act will make it harder for certain Canadians to cast a ballot.

"When this bill passes it will be illegal for Elections Canada to encourage young people to vote," he said. "Because, well, there's the problem right there, isn't it? I mean, you get young people voting, next thing you know you have an entire generation of informed citizens running around taking part in democracy and feeling a real ownership in Canada."

And Democratic Reform Minister Pierre Poilievre? Mercer said any member of the Tory caucus would tell you he is "the last man on Earth who should be put in charge of reforming democracy."

Then, earlier this month, Mercer slammed Tory MP Brad Butt, who he said was caught "lying" about voter fraud in the House of Commons.

But Mercer's latest rant is sure to spark discussion.

Do you think there should be serious thought given to the idea of online voting? Why or why not? Tell us in the comments.

Also on HuffPost:

Pierre Poilievre Through The Years
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