Dr. Thomas Trappenberg, leader of the Green Party of Nova Scotia, would like to share this statement on the passing of Grand Chief Ben Sylliboy:
Election day has passed, and the Green Party of Nova Scotia has a lot to be proud of at the moment! We may not have taken a seat, thanks to our first past the post system, but we’ve smashed some records this time around:
GPNS ran 32 candidates and received 11,128 votes. This is more than the number of votes we received with a full slate in 2009 (9,636) or 2006 (9,411).
For the first time, we received 5% of the vote in a riding. And we did it thirteen times. In a proportional electoral system, 5% is a common threshold for recognition as it prevents splinter groups from forming.
Our percentage of the vote across the 32 ridings in which we ran was 4.5%. Our previous high was 2.78%.
In a proportionally representative electoral system, we would have two seats to represent these 11,128 voters. Of course, in a proportionally representative system, many more voters could have cast their ballots our way.
A major party focus of this past election was to forge a sustainable team of people willing to work or to train as organizers and campaigners for a positive future. We intend to continue to build our capacity, and we will remain active between elections.
We have been building our reputation through personal contact, social media presence, and broadcast media. We hope that one day, some of the leader debates will be open to the leaders of all officially registered parties who already have seats in the house.
Following are some inspiring words from Tyler Colbourne, our candidate for Dartmouth North. We couldn’t agree more.
“11000 out of 396500 votes in this election were for Green candidates. That is 11,000 votes for a more sustainable and fair government. That is 11,000 votes for better representation towards justice, sustainability, and evidence-based approaches to policy. That is 11,000 votes for Green values.
A small village voted for Greens in this election and a small village can do a lot. Over the next four years we can do more and our small village can grow, because our small village is part of a larger international community of Greens who want fairer representation, action towards non-violent policies, sustainable action and planning, and justice.
A global movement of Greens is what separates us from other parties and ideologies in Canada. We are more than just a one party issue. We are a collection of people worldwide who believe in a better today and expect a better tomorrow. I look forward to doing more for our province, country, and international Green community.” – Tyler Colbourne, Green Party of NS Candidate for Dartmouth North
Thank you, Nova Scotia.
Thomas Trappenberg, Leader
Jessica Alexander, Deputy Leader
I have been asked if I, as the GPNS party leader, would ever whip a vote, forcing other party representatives to vote as I decree. My answer is quite simple, and clearly illustrated by what I am witnessing with recent events in the province.
In every election, candidates make statements about how important it is to have local representation, and how their first allegiance is to their constituents. If this is true, how can the leader of the ruling party tell all party members how they must vote in the legislature, even when constituents are clearly stating this is not the action they wish their representatives to take? Is this really what should happen in a democracy?
Some people put forward the argument that voters are actually voting for a platform, and that the party leadership must make sure to obey this stated platform above all else. But if that were the case, how does this come into play with the current teacher’s dispute? I do not remember reading in the Liberal platform that a Liberal government would deny teachers the right of fair bargaining and order a contract. Perhaps our local MLAs could explain to us exactly why they would vote for Bill 75. Is there any reason other than “Premier McNeil told me so”?
One of our pillars of the Green Party of Nova Scotia, in agreement with the international green charter, is participatory democracy. We strongly believe in consensus based decision making, which means that one person, even if he is a Premier in a majority government, should not have the power to dictate the actions of other party members.
So, would I ever enforce a vote along party lines? No, because the practice defies my understanding of democracy.