Halifax, Nova Scotia – The Atlantica Party calls for all votes in the Nova Scotia Legislature to be free votes. Like speech, voting in the Legislature should be completely free. Without free voting our democracy is a sham since party interests come before the people’s interests.
Currently MLAs have their voting dictated by party functionaries or they face discipline including denial of caucus posts, committee positions, travel and all kinds of legislative, budgetary and constituency favours. There is also the risk of not having nomination papers signed, a premature end to a political career and expulsion from the party. Graham Steele said in his fifteen years in politics he could only recall a handful of times when an MLA heroically voted against his or her party since, as he said, ‘punishment follows’. The Atlantica Party believes it essential to break party discipline and allow MLAs to effectively represent voters. This will empower citizens and make MLAs truly accountable. The most effective way of doing this is to make every vote in the legislature a free vote.
“The Atlantica Party believes that all MLAs must be free to put the wishes of their constituents and the needs of Nova Scotia ahead of party interest,” said Jonathan G Dean, Leader of the Atlantica Party. “As Premier I will allow all Atlantica Party MLAs to always vote freely.”
Free voting is part of the Atlantica Party’s Democracy Revolution platform.