6 new B.C. MPs are not enough, says NDP
B.C. is getting six new seats in the House of Commons, giving the province 42 seats in the new 338-seat house — about three seats less than it deserves, according to the province's NDP leader.
The new seats — part of a federal government plan to expand the Commons by 30 seats to rebalance the distribution by population — was unveiled Thursday by Tim Uppal, minister of state for democratic reform.
Under the proposal, Quebec will also get three new seats, while Alberta will get six, and Ontario will get 15.
The six new seats will give B.C. about eight per cent of the seats in the House of Commons, but the province has a population of about 4,555,000 or about 13 per cent of Canada's more than 34,500,000 people.
Liberal MLA John Les, who is the parliamentary secretary to the premier, called the new seats a significant achievement for the province.
"At the end of the day, I think they've arrived at a solution that is balanced ... is it immaculate perfection? Probably not, but a pretty good result for British Columbia."
B.C. short-changed again
But the NDP Opposition Leader Adrian Dix says once again B.C. is being short-changed and the redistribution unfairly favors Alberta and Quebec over British Columbia.
"Under this plan, B.C. will still not receive its full measure of representation in the House of Commons," said Dix in statement released on Thursday.
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"B.C. gets six additional seats, instead of seven under the 2010 proposal, while both Alberta and Quebec receive more seats than they did under the earlier plan.
"Under this plan, B.C. will continue to be inadequately represented in the House of Commons, while remaining dramatically under-represented in the Senate."
"True representation by population would provide B.C. with nine additional seats, three more than the six under the proposed legislation.
Dix said he planned to write to Prime Minster Stephen Harper to voice his concerns.