Voting for electoral system changePeter Shirtcliffe may be 80, but he has a lot of say in this new anti MMP “Vote for Change” group, and spokesperson Jordan Williams is merely helping him along a bit.
The group's rules show the committee has just two people: spokesperson Jordan Williams and Peter Shirtcliffe. However Simon Lusk is also involved.This committee holds office until the next Annual General meeting of the society – usually held in May - six months after the election. Perhaps it`ll be a post-mortem on the referendum – that’s if the group has not already been wound up.
If members want to call a special general meeting it can be up to four months before it is held, but if Shirtcliffe and Williams want to hold one, they can do so within 14 days of a committee meeting.
The group’s founding members include Peter Shirtcliffe, Aaron Hape, Annabel Young, Chris Parkin, Emma Daken and Michael Bassett – most signed up by Jordan Williams – all who support one of two electoral systems. The good news about this group is that anyone can apply to join. The bad news is that the couple on the committee can remove any member, or refuse any prospective member, for pretty much any reason – like intending to vote for change to STV. Their decision is final. Only certain "votes for change" are permitted.
Now back to the electoral systems and the possible review of MMP. The “Vote for Change” group believes the review process is flawed as it is up to the politicians to “fix” MMP. Furthermore they’ve said that those who support a review of MMP are really admitting that MMP is “flawed”.
On Morning Report, Williams said that his group is about discussing “what of the four alternative” electoral systems should replace MMP. Yet the group refuses to discuss the benefits of Preferential Voting and the STV systems.
So in reality, the group is about “which of two alternative” electoral systems – First Past the Post or Supplementary Member - should be preferred, with the result being Supplementary Member, as decreed. Those who support any other system could be deemed as acting “contrary to the aims of the society”, as their vote for change is not what Williams and Shirtcliffe propose.
As both Williams and Shirtcliffe have come out in support of Supplementary Member (SM), if other members disagree with an impending announcement to support the SM electoral system, because they support First Past the Post, will that affect their membership, will they be coerced to support SM - or will they be told to shut up.