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Monday, March 5, 2012

VOTER SUPPRESSION SCHOOL: Manning Center for Democracy

Here's an interesting letter to the editor, which may or may not be or has or has not been published.

From: John Fryer

To: sunletters@vancouversun.com
Sent: Saturday, March 03, 2012 2:14 PM
Subject: Letter to the editor


Dear Editor,

In January 2010 my UVic inbox had an e-mail invite from the Manning Centre for Democracy to a Campaign School. Intrigued,I signed up for the 3 day event. Topics covered included voter identification. Discussion ensued about suppression techniques. Instructors explained voter suppression tactics were borrowed from those used by the U.S. Republican Party. Many kinds of suppression calls were canvassed. Another instructor gave detailed explanations of how robo calls worked, techniques for recording messages plus costs involved. He distributed his business card upon request.

Instructors made clear that robo calling and voter suppression were perfectly acceptable and a normal part of winning political campaigns. The denials now expressed by the Prime Minister and his Parliamentary associates thus ring hollow if not something worse.

Having attended this Campaign School it's obvious that for Conservatives voter suppression strategies are standard in their playbook on how to conduct elections. Having thus lowered their standard of election ethics to that of their Republican cousins it is hardly surprising that the result is a so-called majority government that was voted for by 39% of the 61% who managed to get to their proper polling station. A majority government supported by a mere 26 percent of Canadians.

A more compelling case for changing to a system of proportional representation where each and every vote counts is hard to imagine.


Sincerely yours,
John Fryer C.M.
Adjunct Professor,
School of Public Administration,
University of Victoria.


Elections fraud is a violation of the Elections Act. The harper government is not taking the proper action to stop this attack on Canadian Democracy. An attack in effect, on our National Security. It is imperative that Canadians keep constant pressure on the government so they will take action to defend our right to fair vote. 


We need an Independent Judicial Inquiry into illegal activity. The link below contains a letter that can be sent to all MP's. All email address's are also included. Please take action:


Canadians Want Inquiry Into Robocall Scandal



JCVdude
Joe Vass
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10 comments:

Patricia Anne McGoldrick said...

Your conclusion is apt. Seems to make a case for changing the voting!

James S said...

In my person letter the PM and other party leaders I also stated that proportional representation would a fair way to avoid this issue, depending on the implementation of course.

Nice letter. Glad to see us citizens take democracy seriously.

Skinny Dipper said...

I think those of us who want some form of proportional representation need to state that we want it so we can have a democracy in Canada. Any voting system not proportional is not democratic.

Anonymous said...

"Any voting system not proportional is not democratic."

Sorry, but that is nonsense.

Although I could be talked out of my position by the next leader of the NDP, who I predict will be 30% Topp, 25% Mulcair, 22% Nash.....

syncrodox said...

You folks may want to read this;

http://blogs.canoe.ca/davidakin/politics/the-manning-campaign-manual-on-voter-contact/

Mr. Fryer forgot to mention he was
Elizabeth May's campaign manager while he attended the campaign school.

I wonder if he will respond to David Aiken? Any bets?

Trystan Goetze said...

At the risk of sounding like this is the 1960s, I thought this was (North) America, not the USSR (or modern Russia, if things are as they seem)!

ABLib said...

David Akin is Sun Media's national bureau chief and host of The Daily Brief on Sun News Network.

saskboy said...

What difference does his party affiliation matter, his information is not refuted by Aiken's experience or information. As far as I can tell from my interaction with Aiken, he takes journalism seriously (even though he works at SunTV), so while he has to make a token effort to please the true believers like SDA's' frequent commenter Syncrodox, he didn't really damage Fryer's claim.

"Discussion" doesn't have to follow from what is printed. Those unfamiliar with classroom discussion (probably because they skipped school or tuned out when discussion took place), would not know this, and explains their confusion in accepting Aiken's story as a refutation.

syncrodox said...

Saskboy

Mr. Fryer could have dispelled any partisan shadows by voluntarily disclosing his position as Ms. May's campaign manager, for what ever reason he chose a different tact.

As far as the veracity of Mr. Freyers recollections of the content of the seminar he attended, some proof would be in order.

Surely an Adjucnt Professor of Public Administration kept some notes from the seminar. Perhaps he collected business cards that he said were offered. Why, he might even have some sort of program guide or registration papers that identify the individuals who instructed the seminar. Any seminar materials that dealt with voter suppression, would of course constitute the proverbial smoking gun.

Mr. Fryer makes some serious claims, not the least of which is that employees, agents or contractors of The Manning Center for Democracy were counselling seminar participants in potentially illegal voter suppression tactics.

It would behoof Mr. Freyer to disclose any substantive evidence he has to bolster his claims because IMHO failure to do so could be actionable.

I agree that Mr. Aiken appears to be a professional and ethical journalist.

I look forward to Mr. Fryer responding to Mr. Aiken's request for more information. Last time I asked no such contact has yet been made.

Make of that what you will.

And finally, I also comment at The HuffPo...does it matter?

syncrodox said...

Looks like Mr. Fryer has clarified his claims. Good for him but I find it somewhat curious that he chose an obscure Leadnow affiliated journo to speak with.

http://www.vancouverobserver.com/politics/2012/03/07/robo-call-scandal-origins-inside-conservatives%E2%80%99-voter-suppression-school?page=0,1