The Scottish Parliament and the Welsh and London Assemblies use a form of MMP (with regional lists in the national cases.) The Northern Irish Assembly uses STV, and then proportional allocation of the ministers based on the d'Hondt method. The London Mayor, like most elected Mayors, is elected with a truncated form of STV. And of course, the European Parliament is STV.
The British voter, by and large, is familiar with and accepting of non-FPP voting systems. So there's no reason you couldn't see electoral reform, but voters are very suspicious of things like AV, which looked like a Lib Dem jack-up.
Lianne didn't run as a Labour candidate - it's not really like we have any control over someone who explicitly ran as an independent.
Not sure the People's Choice and the Labour Party are very distant on this issue - here's what Labour thinks about the Common Sense Plan:
The Common Sense Plan for Christchurch released by The People’s Choice today is a welcome relief from the shallow debate about rates rises versus asset sales, Labour’s Christchurch MPs say.
"We congratulate The People’s Choice for developing what is a sound financial consideration of how we can move forward as a city.
In the long run (i.e beyond the 2019 debt hump that we're being massaged through at the moment) though, turning productive capital into unproductive capital (i.e a white elephant stadium etc) will mean that rates will inevitably have to rise to cover the loss of income. Asset sales aren't magic - they just hide the cost for the time being.
I think the narrative of forced-into-asset-sales is quite rosy.
Sure, there are some councillors who feel they have to make tough decisions - and the People's Choice councillors are well aware that partial asset sales may need up being part of mix - but there's also a strong ideological push to sell off assets from councillors who just don't think the council should own them anyway.
If you saw Jamie Gough's comments in the Press, he's already made up his mind - it's asset sales. Asset sales. That's it, done and dusted. And it's not like this is new - Gough (and the Independent Citizens) has always hated the idea of council ownership of CityCare, Port of Lyttelton, Red Bus, etc.
I also don't think there is a genuine will among the "brighter councillors" (whatever that means) for new ideas to come out of the submission process. I think there's an effort to railroad asset sales through as a cheap and easy way of making the council finances look good in the short term, and the long term damage done to the city? That's someone else's problem, in twenty years time. Just look at the very short time frame on LTP submissions, or the way the LTP document is so stacked towards asset sales that the Council had to put out a statement making clear it's not a done deal yet!
Except that it's a well known result in political science that voting/not-voting is a habit so it is likely that it wouldn't be a momentary bounce, it'd be a long term shift in voting propensity amongst the affected cohorts.
Further, yes, it won't fix the ongoing decline in voter turnout. No thing on it's own will fix that, not even those things which when put together will.
If you think that the line is driving, sex, and leaving school, the voting age should be 16.
(PS hear hear Hilary!)
Given that contact and engagement via political parties is a driver of voter turnout I do think we should make it easy for parties to communicate with voters if we are serious about increasing turnout and engagement.
It’s also not the case that if you stop people accessing roll data they’ll no longer have access to that kind of data. It will just cost more and be less accurate, which will primarily hurt small and left wing parties.
As far as direct mail goes, (a) modern campaigns can be very very targetted, and often use demographic, geographic, and other data in ways it would be extremely hard if not impossible to replicate through an NZPost interface, and (b) it would be prohibitively expensive to use NZPost to print, sort and send mail compared to the current system of volunteer sorting and deliveries. So in practice the parties that could afford would buy private databases and use them (as they do in America) and parties that couldn't would struggle.
Similarly, it is in principle possible to do door-to-door canvassing absent a database of voters, but it means you can't do enrolment work (because you can't tell who's enrolled or not) and if you wanted to do anything with the information gathered, you'd end up creating your own database as you went - at which point, again, some parties would buy commercially and others would struggle.
Finally, it would be very hard to campaign in the Māori seats absent accurate roll data.
The reason Rob (or rather, Rob via the NZLP) should have access to electoral roll data is that voter contact by political parties is a key driver of voter turnout, and voter engagement with the electoral system. And there's a similar argument for non-party groups that want to use the data for civic engagement purposes - Greenpeace might want to talk to voters about what this election means for climate change, for instance, and that might engage and motivate people to participate and vote.
I agree with you beyond that though - I don't see why any private individual should be able to access the Roll other than for limited purposes of public scrutiny. (Which is why I don't like the "chuck it on the internet and ban commercial use" answer - there's lots of people who wouldn't care about that ban, and there's lots of people who'd be doing things that it'd be impossible to police but still nasty.)
At present the rules around the Roll are very weak and lead to some stuff that I think is pretty worrying, even aside from the debt collection etc issues. For instance, David Farrar used the National Party's copy of the Roll to try to look up a female MP's home address in order to pass it on to Cameron Slater, although I don't think it ever ended up on WhaleOil. I can't think of a good reason to let that sort of thing happen. (Which also makes me pretty doubtful of how much to trust political Parties with Roll data.)