First right-familism, then left-familism, and now demo-familism, with Victorian multi-millionaire father-of-three Labor MP Evan Thornley proposing that parents get votes they can exercise on behalf of their under-18 children.
Given Thornley’s narrow victory in the 2006 Victorian state election I can well understand why he might want an extra three votes. But what are the in-principle arguments for his proposal?:
Families are currently underrepresented in our democracy. They pay but don’t have a say. A family of five or six has no more say in our democracy than a couple of two — yet their needs and potential contribution are greater.
“Electorates with large numbers of families can have up to 30 per cent more people in them than ones that don’t. As a consequence, issues of long-term concern to families like early childhood development, education and the environment don’t get the priority they deserve in our democracy.”
The idea of plural voting has a long history. In the 19th century John Stuart Mill favoured it, on the grounds that intelligent people would cast better-informed votes: Continue reading “Demo-familism”