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Submitted on 20/02/2012 - 6:17pm relating to the issues Basis for eligibility for list seats (thresholds), Dual Candidacy, Overhang, Proportion of electorate seats to list seats
Should the 5% threshold be kept or changed? Why? If you recommend change, what should it be and why?:
The threshold should be raised to 7.5 or 10 percent. This ensures that only parties with a very clear vote by a reasonably large portion of New Zealanders are in parliament. At present there is a very high risk of fringe or marginal parties getting voted in based on good press or pr. Parliament should represent the majority of citizens, not an outspoken minority.
Should the one electorate seat threshold be kept or changed? Why? If you recommend change, what should it be and why?:
Should be changed provided the minimum threshold of percent of votes is also increased.
Should there be a different combination of thresholds? What should they be and why?:
No. Should be based on pr engage of the votes - a high percentage, not a fringe minority.
Should dual candidacy be kept? If so, why?:
If you recommend change, what should it be and why?:
Should be one or the other. Too often a candidate has been clearly not backed in an electorate but has ended up in parliament courtesy of their list ranking. This is in clear contradiction to the voice of the people. Candidates must decide suture they want to represent their electorate or their party - they should not have both options. This is not available to job candidates in the open job market, so politicians should be no different.
What should happen when a party wins more electorate seats than it would be entitled to under its share of the party vote?:
Electorate seats take priority. If a candidate wins more than their share then good luck to them. The number of list seats should then be reduced. Electorates should be the priority - currently there are too many politicians that are not answerable to anyone. Especially those on the opposition list who actually represent nobody in parliament directly.
Is this a problem, and what should be done to fix it?:
Population growth should not come into the equation. Seats in parliament should be based on what is required to run the country, not based on population. The current system does not have each seat equally divided based on population so population growth in particular areas should not dictate additional seats.