Andrea Rondeau column: I’ll beg if I have to, to get you to vote

Andrea Rondeau column: I’ll beg if I have to, to get you to vote

Please, please, please mail in your vote in the proportional representation election.

I feel like I’ve been urging people to vote a lot lately.

Nevertheless, and at the risk of sounding one note, here comes another sales pitch.

Please, please, please mail in your vote in the proportional representation election.

OK, so maybe not the smoothest pitch of all time. Perhaps I should have asked our stellar sales team for some tips. Maybe I shouldn’t sound so desperate right off the bat. More persuasion, less begging. Just pretend I did all that.

What it should tell you, though, is how strongly I feel about this. I’m willing to beg if it gets results. I hope it impresses upon you, just a little, how important this is.

Because it is vital.

When I see reports about how few people have turned in their ballots, I hope that most are just like me, and didn’t open it right away, wanting to sleep on it a bit before making the choice. Peruse the options carefully to make sure I understood the choices before marking my ballot and heading to the mail box.

Or, alternately, they just procrastinate on most things and will do it at the last minute.

The first time British Columbians were asked whether we wanted proportional representation in our provincial voting system, it barely failed. It’s worth noting that if it had only needed a simple majority (50 per cent, plus one), it would have passed. But that time it needed a bigger majority.

The second time we voted on this there was little publicity, and it came as no surprise that it failed again, this time by a larger margin.

I can’t help but think that those in power will not be eager to ask this question of voters again for some time. This really is likely a watershed moment.

I think British Columbians are smart. I think they can figure out whether to vote yes or no to proportional representation, and further (though it’s not mandatory) I think they can figure out which proportional system they want, if their answer to the first question is “yes”. There are lots of great aides out there, including videos and explainers that simplify things pretty well.

But it’s really important that you vote, one way or another. This is our future we’re deciding. Our voting system isn’t something that should be chosen by a tiny portion of the electorate, but that’s the way it’s going to be if you don’t take five minutes to mark your ballot.