Mandate debate

It should be noted that electoral victory only represented a small portion of eligible vote

I have to take issue with editor John Harding’s careless use of the word “mandate” in his otherwise thoughtful editorial (‘Clear mandate’) in the May 16 edition of The NEWS.

The Oxford dictionary definition of the word is “political authority supposed to be given by electors to (party in) Parliament.”

This implies that a mandate consists of more than 50 per cent of the votes cast.

Since the winning Liberals received 44.43 per cent, Harding’s claim that the new government has a clear mandate from the people of the province is incorrect.

In the case of our local winner, B.C. Liberal Michelle Stilwell, she can rightly be congratulated on having a mandate since she garnered 30 votes more than the defined 50 per cent.

Michael Green


Qualicum Beach