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Inevitably, in close elections some people call for voters to vote “strategically” to keep one party from gaining power. In this election, they are advocating to vote Liberal instead of NDP to ensure that the Conservatives do not win in certain close ridings. Their logic is faulty.

Strategic voting doesn’t work. No one has a crystal ball that can predict the outcome in ridings that are too close to call. A strategic vote for your second choice may actually keep your preferred party from winning. The result may be that our least favoured choice wins.

This happened in several key ridings in the last election. A strategic vote for the Liberals in Oshawa meant that the Conservative candidate was able to win a narrow victory over the second place NDP candidate. The Liberals came third. In that case, strategic voting worked against us and probably cost us the balance of power in a minority government.

The only clear choice is to vote for the party that best represents your interests.