POLITICS

Trudeau Asked By Canadians To Hold Electoral Reform Referendum, Letters Show

12/02/2016 12:07 EST | Updated 12/02/2016 12:21 EST
OTTAWA — Newly released documents show Canadians have been urging Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to hold a referendum on electoral reform.

In nearly 200 pages of messages to the prime minister, some staunch Liberal supporters even say they're prepared to reconsider their allegiance over the handling of the electoral reform file.

justin trudeau

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is shown in Toronto on Dec. 1, 2016. (Photo: Chris Young/CP)

The messages, obtained by The Canadian Press under the Access to Information Act, date back to May, when the government gave Liberals a majority on the Commons electoral reform committee — a move they eventually reversed after a public outcry.

The majority of letter writers express a desire for proportional representation to replace the current first-past-the-post system, and only a few said no to a referendum.

Several also asked Trudeau to heed the recommendations of the electoral reform committee when it delivered its final report, which happened Thursday.

Monsef blasted committee report

Democratic Institutions Minister Maryam Monsef blasted the report, which recommended the government design a new proportional voting system and hold a referendum to gauge public support for it.

Liberals on the committee dissented, and urged Trudeau to abandon his promise to have a new system in place for the next election in October 2019.

Monsef says she still hopes to introduce legislation in the spring.

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