Mac says no to 1 man-1 vote

| 13/05/2011

(CNS): The premier has said that he does not support one man, one vote and never has. At a public meeting on Tuesday McKeeva Bush said that while he has always told the country he was not in favour of that type of vote, he did not believe the opposition supported it either as they did not enshrine it in the constitution when they had the chance. Bush accused the PPM ofrefusing to put it  in the document despite being in government during the UK constitutional discussions. However, Alden McLaughlin says that it was the result of a "regretted compromise” because of the Bush’s vehement opposition that one man, one vote did not get enshrined. The PPM is and always has been in favour, he said. (Photo Dennie WarrenJr)

Speaking to an audience in front of the court house in a mid-term UDP rally Tuesday night, the premier stated that his opposition to one man, one vote had been constant, while this was not the case for the opposition.

He questioned whether the opposition leader, Alden McLaughlin, and the former leader of government business, Kurt Tibbetts, really wanted one man, one vote in George Town. He asked why, if they had supported it, did they not use their power as the government at the time and say in the constitution itself that such a voting method would come into effect on a certain day.

“If they have a gripe about one man one vote and want it for the next election then that’s what they should have done in London,” he said referring to the negotiations that took place between the Cayman delegation and the UK government in 2008. “The PPM refused to put it in the constitution.”

Bush described this as typical behaviour of the PPM who made promises which were never fulfilled.

However, the opposition leader pointed out that the vehement objection from the UDP delegation at the time, and in particular Bush and Juliana O’Connor-Connolly, led, much to McLaughlin’s regret, to a compromise to allow the legislators to select the method of voting instead of enshrining it. (See First round of Constitutional talks for UDP objections Pg 76)

“We were at the time trying to get a document everyone would support,” he noted, adding that it was Sir Ian Hendry, the UK representative that led the negotiations, who suggested the compromise of enshrining the size of the legislature but leaving the voting method to the local lawmakers in order to get passed the impasse. The opposition leader said the goal of the constitutional negotiations was to get a document that everyone, including the Chamber, the Human Rights Committee, the churches and the political parties, would support.

McLaughlin explained, “The premise was that the constitution should be a negotiated document with the agreement of all the Cayman delegation, not just the UK," and said it had to be supported by everyone in order to get the country to accept it. He said the PPM had wanted the entire delegation that went to London to come back and be in a position to support the ‘Yes’ campaign, but in the event that did not happen.

“I regret to this day that we made that compromise as the UDP reneged on the agreement,” McLaughlin said, pointing out that Bush had still come back and told the people to vote ‘No’ . “Maybe we were too idealistic,” he added.

However, McLaughlin said the PPM had always been in favour of one man, one vote and continued to support the concept, which is one of the points listed in the opposition leader’s motion of no confidence.

Following the publication by the boundary commission’s comments that at the public meetings they held there was widespread support for one man one vote, the decision by government to simply add more multiple members to existing constituencies has caused considerable criticism.

Ezzard Miller, the independent member for North Side who has been a vocal supporter of the concept said the premier is wrong when he thinks the people don’t support one man, one vote. “I do not agree with the premier that the people don’t want this, the people I represent certainly do and so do many, many others across the country,” he stated. Miller has frequently pointed out the inequality of the current voting system which is about to get worse with the introduction of two more members for George Town.

On Tuesday in an attempt to answer the criticism by Miller and Arden McLean who also represents a single member constituency Bush said it was not unfair that those districts only had one vote as he said it was because they were too small to have more. “If they were bigger they would have more,” he said, indicating that he misunderstood the fundamental issue of the objections.

Bush said that single member representatives could still be minister or even premier. However, the objections are more concerned about the ability of individual voters, not their members, to cast more than one vote and have a greater influence on the make-up of the entire government in multimember constituents compared to one man one vote which is believed by most to offer a more democratic and equitable way for a government to be elected.


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  1. Anonymous says:

    Of course, anyone who wants to can go down to the Public Library or National Archive and listen the recordings of the negotiations to confirm who really said or didn't say what they are claiming in this instance and the district councils brouhaha. Meanwhile the transcripts are still up on the Cabinet Office website too…

  2. Anonymous says:

    The present system allowed Jim and Haig Bodden to boast off in Bodden Town that they could put broomsticks up for election and if they told their supporters to vote for them they would. They were correct… least for a while until the terrible excesses and sell-outs to Texans of Jim, in particular and the Unity Team sunk into a by then disgruntled electorate. But what we have today in West Bay is no different and Mr Bush knows it. People are voting for him and the other three with him – whoever they are. CG and Rolston appear to be breathing at least and capable of basic speech but dear old Capt Eugene, well the jury is out on that one.

    • Anonymous says:

      A broomstick is a better choice than at least one (take your pick) of the Bodden Towners serving in the LA, in one capacity or the other, right now.

  3. tim ridley says:

    It is quite perplexing that anyone should be against the principle of one person, one vote. It is even more perplexing that the likely outcome of the latest proposals is that George Town voters will have six votes, thus exacerbating the current illogicality. Indeed, it might just be a case of "be careful what you wish for".

    • Anonymous says:

      Not only perplexing, but this is WHAT THE PEOPLE WANT and unfortunately the people don't have a say in anything here.  Once you get it through your heads that it doesn't matter what you want!!! If one vote one person was approved you do know who wouldn't be in government anymore

  4. Dreadlock Holmes says:

    The true advantage to multi-representative ridings (and one political parties are not apt to mention in their b.s.) is the ability to choose certain areas for special treatment. Projects, etc. And to give unstressful government jobs as prizes in order to gain more seats. All political parties are adept at this and it has nothing to do with the workings of a democracy.

  5. Anonymous says:

    How will cayman Brac and Little Cayman be divided?

    • Loopy Lou says:

      The Brac will go the Chinese.  Little Cayman will be auctioned off afterwards.

  6. Just in case says:

    "The premier has said that he does not support one man, one vote and never has. At a public meeting on Tuesday McKeeva Bush said that while he has always told the country he was not in favour of that type of vote, he did not believe the opposition supported it either as they did not enshrine it in the constitution when they had the chance"

    Dear Mac and Alden,

    Just in case neither of you morons realizes, it is not what the PPM or UDP wants, it is what the people want!

    The people of this country have had enough of the both of you and a 3rd option is rapidly coming to the forefront and it does not involve Charles Clifford!

    See you both at the polls.


    • Anonymous says:

      You just took that quote from Mac and took it as gospel. I have to laugh! PPM supports one man one vote. CNS just had a story up about that the other day.

      • anonymous says:

        Anonymous @ 18:24 do you want to hear some gosple, then listen to this,……if PPM really supported o.m.o.v. it would have been inshrined in the new constitution,Alden McChavezin and the rest of the PPM made a big big mistake because of their insincerity , now it's coming back home to bite them………Laugh at that!!!!!

  7. Anonymous says:


    This says it all – suppression of democratic rights and oppression of the Caymanian people under the Dictatorship of this man. Welcome to the world of the UDP for all of them support their leader.


    • senior citizen says:

      "FELLOW CAYMANIANS"???  What is this?!  The 18th Century?!!!

      And "DICTATORSHIP"???  The UK should declare full British Rule here and show you what it means to be under a DICTATORSHIP!!!

      This case looks bad on the Cayman Islands!

      • Anonymous says:

        At the rate Bush is going we will end up with British Rule and the ruin of our financial industry. Thanks to the voters who support him and elected the UDP into office. He is conducting a one man rule dictatorship.


        • shhhh says:

          Shhhh… and its people like yourself that opposes it, crying for help, that's making this spin out of control

          • Anonymous says:

            No you are wrong.  It is Bush that is causing it to spin out of control.

            To allow him to contiue unchallanged would be like not treating cancer.

            It is not going away without treatment.  He like a cancer must be removed.

            • Anonymous2 says:

              you can blame bush, but it is more than him, it the party system we have. don't try to make this look like all bush!

    • Island Lover says:

      The party system has done nothing more than secure career politicians the ability to abuse power XXXX.

      Voters, wake up!  Get rid of this man and the parties that are casing this mess.  It is time that we beg a dozen of our most successful businessmen to stand for office as independents and break this political party cycle.  Our island is too small for this nonsense….

      Big Mac or PPM? I don't want either anymore!!!

  8. The Lone Haranguer says:

    The fat begins at the top, do we realy need 17 MLA's noooo, Mac is almost running this place by himself, we need to get more Caymanians into the private sector and of that sweet teat which is a public service Job.

  9. petermilburn says:

    Whats all the fuss about?Dont we have a "one man one vote "situation right now?Looks like it when last I checked or am I confusing what is going on on a daily basis with our Premier?

  10. Dirk says:

    The amount of misunderstanding and misinformation is really embarassing in relation to this issue.

    "One man one vote" is a catchy slogan for single member constituencies. It means each person will vote for only one person out of a slate of candidates to be his or her representative. If single member constituencies were implemented in Cayman all three islands would be divided into 18 districts with approximately equal populations, and then each district would elect ONE representative from the pool of candidates.

    Right now we have multi-member constituencies. The islands are divided into six districts of drastically varying sizes and voters elect between ONE and FOUR representatives (between ONE and SIX if the additional MLAs are distributed as expected) from the pool of candidates.

    The PPM advocated single member constituencies during the constitutional negotiations and the UDP opposed them, preferring the status quo. The compromise proposed by Alden was to not specify the exact electoral system but rather leave this to the Legislative Assembly. The transcripts of the negotiations are online, PLEASE read it for yourself!

    Click here

    The main discussion starts at page 291 and the proposed compromise and reasoning is on pages 295 – 296.

    The current UDP administration seems to have decided to remain with multi-member constituencies. The PPM has continued to support single member constituencies and promised that if elected in 2013 they will implement this new electoral system. It is painfully obvious from his comments both during the constitutional negotiations and in this article that our Premier either has NO IDEA what he is talking about or is playing dumb and trying to confuse people to maintain the status quo. Arguments that implementing single member constituencies will cost more because if we have 18 electoral districts we will then need a post office and school in each are red herrings.

    • Anonymous says:

      The current UDP administration seems to have decided to remain

    • Anonymous says:

      Every time I read what this Premier (tongue in cheek) says about the democratic rights of the Caymanians, I cry a little. At one time,I promoted the Cayman Islands for the Department of Tourism and held my head very high when I talked about our peaceful, crime-free "Islands that time forgot".  Now the premier's love of money and people whose names can be dropped when he is hollering and blustering on the tv or radio about what he is doing and what he is going to do, has completely destroyed the way of life in the islands that we knew and loved.  A lot of people are praying for the vote of "No Confidence" to go forward to a happy end, but the only way that can happen is for there to be the secret ballot used against him that was used against the other side in 2001.  There are members in his government that I am truly disappointed in.  I thought some of them were honest and conscientious and wanted things better for Caymanians.  Now I see the situation clearly.  The country is being run by a dictator and his small fries.  There is no-one in his government that has the guts to speak out against him publicly and there are some good Caymanians in there that would get re-elected  if they had the guts to stand up against him, but when one man dictates and everyone else follows, what is that?  IT IS A DICTATORSHIP AND RIGHT NOW WE ARE NO BETTER OFF THAN ANY OTHER DICTATORSHIP IN THE WORLD.  Iran and North Korea are a lot better than Cayman and Caymanians need to rise up and say ":WE HAVE HAD ENOUGH"and proceed to change things.


  11. ER says:

    "regretted compromise" ????  Alden is that the best excuse you can come up with?

  12. Anonymous says:

    One Man, One Vote = UDP No Hope


    The Mac will always find people to support him but the small fries will be toasted!!!!!



  13. nauticalone says:

    One person, one vote is a clear example of Equal Human Rights! Not perfect, but much more equal/fair!

    Of course some of our "Christians" got sooooo caught up with "Gay Rights" that they were willing to "Compromise" for the "Modernised Constitution" that we now have.

    I was, and still am, of the opinion that it would have served "the people" better for the 2009 Constitution to have been delayed so as to better educate our people about it.

    However, at least Alden is willing to admit his error / "regret" and that to me speaks volumes when compared to Mac's disrespectful blaming of others.


    • Pink Power says:

      MLAs of the calibre of Captain Eugene and Dwayne "I did not tell a lie" Seymour are the result of the present multiple vote system.

  14. Anonymous says:

    May says no to 1-man 1-vote. Perhaps someone just needs to put it in simple terms that he can understand, 1-man 1-fridge.

  15. Anonymous says:

    What a mish mash. This is about "single member districts." One man (person, I assume), one vote is a US concept and means the districts are about the same size so that one district doesn't have 400 voters and another have 4000 and everyones votes have the about the same strength in electing their rep. They don't have to be single member, it depends on the size of the districts. Looks like you're not going to have either, however.

  16. anonymous says:

    This reminds me of the memorable  quote made by a senator in the  film 'Gladiator:'   "I said I was of the people. I didn't say I was for the people."

  17. Watler says:

    "The PPM is and always has been in favour," he said.  You know, McKeeva is right. Sorry to say, but PPM have some hypocritical ways. I recall when it was suggested that all the MLA's takea pay cut. Mac would get 20 or 30% cut off his salary and everybody else would get 10% cut off their salary. The PPM was cheering for it – until the day it was brought up in the LA House. Not one of them were willing to cut their salary for this country, but instead left the House cutting the entire civil service 3.2!  So the PPM is just like the UDP, but worse!  Hypocrits!  At least, UDP will tell you straight in your face!  But not the good ole Alden, all innocent and lamb-like.

    • Anonymous says:

      so true… people should know that it was under his tenure that the Constitution 2009 was ratified

  18. anonymous says:

    HaHaHa,poor little babies crying for one man one vote,my sweet how cute………….why in Gods precious name didn't Alden McChavezlin and the rest of the PPM enshrine one man one vote in the new constitution? easy easy answer, Because they were against it………. PPM only pretending to be for it now all because 1) they are not in the drivers seat &2)PPM realize the UDP is solid like a rock and will be very difficult to remove. The UDP and Premeir Bush is way too clever and strong for Alden and the PPM………..UDP yesterday,UDP today and UDP tomorrow…LONG LIVE THE UDP!!

  19. shameful says:

    Shame to UDP and PPM for giving us this flimsy document!  No backbone in any of them!

  20. Anonymous says:

    Well in that case say no to all four of them down west come next election.  In fact say no to all UDP come next election.

    • Pro Caymanian says:

      Just remember that if you dont vote them out, they still stand.

      So just vote for whoever else is running, to not make them have another chance to rub dirt in our faces!!!!

      i am SOOOOOOOOOOO tired of being dragged down as a CAYMANIAN!!!  This Country is not MINE anymore!!!!

  21. Anonymous says:

    Alden McLaughlin says that it was the result of a "regretted compromise” – yeah, a hugh regret!  You are not getting my vote in 2013 

  22. Name changed by moderator says:

    Let's think about this. One person, one vote really puts the power into the hands of the people and quite frankly in a democracy, surely that is where it belongs?

    The party system in Cayman feeds off the injustice of these multiple votes per person and if a person "votes straight", these weaker clowns, who say nothing and do less, ride in on the coat tails of the louder-mouthed candidates.

    No Cayman, we do not have a democracy, because a democracy represents the view of the majority, something that is simply not happening in Cayman.

    In a one-person, one vote scenario, McKeeva Bush would have been out a long time ago and he knows it.

    It is time for a return to honest, transparent government with a referendum on this matter. The politicians should be getting nervous, because their deck of cards is about to come tumbling down.


    CNS Note: Sorry, but you must now register in order to use a real name. Read more here

  23. Lachlan MacTavish says:

    It seems that what Bush is saying here is that because he has been constant in his stand against one man one vote that makes it right for the people and the constitution. That the PPM favor one man one vote but the record seems to say different.

    The simple reason Bush does not favor OMOV is because without party domination , district domination Bush and the blind UDP MLA followers can not get elected with a minority of votes.

    Bush does not favor OMOV because the people are getting educated that the leadership of their country is in adequate to say the least and for Cayman to survive in the future Bush, O'connor-Connolly must go.

  24. 3RD CLASS CITIZEN says:

    Our Premier doesn’t seem to realize what his statement means being against one man one vote. I never believed our Premier had tendencies of a dictator until now. With this public admission being against one man one vote means he suffers from megalomania as well.

    As a civilized people we must defeat this man and all he stands for just for our country to survive. It is obvious that he only listens to and cares for people with money and we do not have the same interests. A leader puts the country first. This is not the case. A leader is someone we can trust. This is not the case with our Premier. The straw that broke the Camel’s back is our leader being against one man one vote means he is against the following:
                                       Equal protection of the laws
                                       Universal suffrage
                                       Basic human rights
    Mr. Miller is absolutely right saying “that we can’t hold our elected representatives accountable without one man one vote”.  Our Premier wants us to stay in the dark ages and we can go along with that any more. Burning Spear has a song that fits this situation = 

  25. Anonymous says:

    McLaughlin explained, “The premise was that the constitution should be a negotiated document with the agreement of all the Cayman delegation, not just the UK," and said it had to be supported by everyone in order to get the country to accept it. He said the PPM had wanted the entire delegation that went to London to come back and be in a position to support the ‘Yes’ campaign, but in the event that did not happen.


    They all conspired to get what them and theirs wanted, these two political parties and their respective church member followers; and cut everyone else out of the equation and…

    This is what the entire Cayman Islands has eventually ended up with.

    A Constitution that is no more democratic, rather much less, and the average, neutral citizen of the Cayman Islands held ransome to these power-crazy politicians and their religious fanatic supporters.

    If the majority of voters had followed those of us who warned and advised them to vote no, as did the 1/3rd (4000 or more) who had the sense to vote no, the voting public would have retained the power to control these corrupt politicians by forcing them to continue the process until the public's wishes were met.

    Sadly, it too late now and a golden opportunity was lost.

  26. Freedom Man says:

    Why would he support it?….If it were up to him no one would get to vote and his reign woul last until his death!  I say make a dictator act like a dictator and all will be revieled!

  27. Anonymous says:

    I'd always assumed McKeeva to be a fan of one man one vote, just so long as he is the man, and he has the vote.

  28. Ann-Marie says:

    CNS:  "Alden McLaughlin says that it was the result of a 'regretted compromise' because of the Bush’s vehement opposition that one man one vote did not get enshrined." – This is just proof that Alden can't deal with Bull dog Bush!  He is a weakling and if Bush caused him to not pass a policy or legal mandate that is in the best interest of this country, that is very very sad!  That is why I would prefer another Opposition Leader who will oppose and stand his ground!  Alden dissappoints me! 

  29. Anonymous says:

    For once, I agree with Mac.

    "One man-one vote" is a mindless slogan because it assumes that all persons are equal.

    Obviously, they are not. Is  full time deadbeat equal to a person such as Einstein?  Of course not.

    Everyone may be equal before  the law, which is ideal,  but seldom exists in practice. The wealthy are always treated much better before the law, regardless of how much we guard against it.

    But do not confuse equality before the law with equality of people, something that is always done, and I believe intentionally.

    The slogan "One nation-one vote", enforced by the United Nations,  is even more ridiculous. It cannot be defended by any logical means, yet it exists.

    "One man-one vote" will eventually destroy any Democracy, as soon as the number of  those receiving benefits exceeds those producing them.

    It always has in history, and it is destroying ours right before our eyes.


    • Freedom Man says:

      You think Cayman is a Democracy?  Get your head out of the sand!

    • Concerned Caymanian says:

      And I agree with you.  We should go back to more votes for landowners and businessmen/women and no votes for deadbeat druggies etc. who just live off the people and contribute nothing. 

      • Anonymous says:

        And while we're at it – let's just bring back slavery and allow men to beat their wives and horses in public.



    • Anonymous says:

      Better yet; every Man votes for all of the Seats in all Districts including the Brac, now that would be real Democracy and more Fridges to come….LOL!

  30. Anonymous2 says:

    "At a public meeting on Tuesday McKeeva Bush said that while he has always told the country he was not in favour of that type of vote, he did not believe the opposition supported it either as they did not enshrine it in the constitution whenthey had the chance."  The Premier does have a point!  That is why I will not be voting for any of them next election!  Alden is no different! 

  31. Anonymous says:

    Mac supports one man one vote in a different context.  He is one man, and he gets the one vote!

  32. Anonymous says:

    1 man says no vote for Mac.