In 1992, I did the research on proportional representation in Germany and Italy, and on some other systems, for the head of political science at Laurentian University as part of the report on electoral reform and party finances. It sits gathering dust in government archives 22 years later. Nothing, of course, happened with it.
I'm a dual citizen. I lived in Germany for some time. I am active in trying to keep up my German with a group of Germans. I remember having people like the head of the Canadian Light Source ask me how a party that got less that 30% of the vote could possibly exercise discipline over even its own members, the way Hitler did in Germany.
We're a unique combination, I think, of party discipline and first past the post. In other jurisdictions, in the U.K., people can disagree with their party, but not in Canada.
We were in New Zealand in 2001, and people told us how they felt. Proportional representation had come through dual referenda. The first was on changing the electoral system.
You heard what that poll, a neutral poll of public opinion, found about how satisfied Canadians are with the system. They had two referenda, and there was another attempt. The first one was overwhelming, despite the opposition of both majority parties. The second referendum ranked which system to use.
We are one of six—I looked this up in Wikipedia yesterday—major democracies that.... Over 30 stable democracies with over two million citizens use proportional representation. We've become a backwater in terms of democracy.