I heard that the people who get chosen to run in a political riding under FPTP would be named from a list of supporters of political parties. Is that true?
That is correct. Only party members may run as a candidate for a political party under FPTP.
So who gets to determine the makeup of the political candidates?
The political parties are solely responsible for the composition of the party candidates under FPTP. They can either be determined by direct orders by the party leadership, or they might be determined by a vote by party members.
No matter what, the candidates for election will be in the hands of members of political parties, who make up a tiny part of the population of Ontario.
Non-aligned voters do not get a say at all.
If I do not like the candidate representing the party that I want to vote for, can I alter the name so I can put the name of my preferred candidate in when it comes time to vote?
No, you cannot. FPTP only allows for closed party candidate selection. This means that voters cannot cross off names or change the candidate's name in the ballot box. The only choice given to the voters under FPTP is to vote for the candidate chosen by the political party.
Your preferred candidate may run as an independent, but they are unlikely to win under FPTP.
But, under FPTP, I can still support the political party, by voting for the party but not the candidate, correct?
No, that is not correct. If you want to support the political party, you must vote for the candidate you do not support.
Wait. I will have to vote for someone I may not want to represent me? Isn't that undemocratic?
Yes. You cannot support your political party and not support their preferred candidate. Similarly, you cannot support your local candidate and not support their political party.
You must choose between selecting a political party you do not support, a candidate you do not support, or spoiling your ballot. Those are your only choices.
That is undemocratic.
Isn't giving political parties total control over selecting the candidate undemocratic?
It is important to be highly regarded within the party to be selected or chosen as a candidate. It helps if the candidate is also well known in the community, but this is not always the case.
If a candidate is highly regarded by the party but not well known in the community, he or she may be parachuted into a riding, most likely into a riding that's called a "safe seat" - one where support runs high for the party, regardless of candidate. The candidate will likely have no ties to the community - neither personal nor professional. He or she is then pretty much guaranteed a seat in the legislature, regardless of how well the party does in an election.
So if you want to vote for a party but do not like whom they have running in your riding, you are pretty much stuck. Not only is this undemocratic, it is also unfair.
If I don't like a candidate running in another riding, how can I make sure that he or she does not get into office?
You could move to that riding, and vote in their election. For most of us, that's simply not possible. Once you have moved, you'd also have to convince the rest of the riding not to support that candidate - and if you don't have a lot of ties in the community, it may be all but impossible.
Update: Fixed a typo.
Update x 2: I've added an addendum.
Up next, false majorities.