[E-voting] Compulsory voting

David GLAUDE dglaude at poureva.be
Fri Sep 9 00:24:04 IST 2005


Michael McMahon wrote:
> Ita Ryan wrote:
>> This is how, in my opinion, voter turnout should be
>> encouraged:
>> - Make it as easy as possible to register
> Eg. Co. Meath has an online registration page at
> http://www.meath.ie/elections/form2.htm

Why do you need to register to vote?
Is there no "database" of every citizen above 18?
Is there no piece of identity that can "proof" who you are?
In Belgium you vote near your legal residence (the place where you are
suppose to sleep).

In Belgium you do receive an "invitation" to come to vote a few week
before the vote.

If you don't get yours you can ask why and ask for one until the morning
of the day of the election.

Anybody can go and check the list of elector to detect ghost, dead voter
or if someone you know is on the list.

Candidate can get a list of all the elector in their place including
name and address... however the limitation of the usage of that list is
well define. I use to be "on paper" but now they get that on CD-ROM.

>> - Have lots of polling stations, easy to access
> I've said this before, but IMHO voters should in the future, be able to
> vote from any polling station
> in the country so long as they can prove their identity. It's not
> practical though with
> paper ballot based systems, (unlike electronic receipt based systems).

Voting in person near the place where you live make you part of your
community, of the city, ... It has a social value. There is no excuses
not to come and vote... if you have good reason not to be present but
you want your vote to be counted then you can give your vote to someone
else (proxy-voting)... someone you trust.

In Belgium we are lucky:
1) We vote on the sunday.
2) We vote near the place where we officially sleep.
3) You can get your travel by train reemburs.

Think about it... in Greece you vote at the place where you were born!!!
even if you moved to another island and require 5H to get there. BUT in
Greece political party do organise travel by bus so that voter can
return to the place they were born on the day of the vote. This might be
the back to the root day, a day of nostalgy where you meet old friend
that did not move... it has some social value. ;-)

>> - Make it as easy as possible to check your vote
>> hasn't been mysteriously deleted

Your VOTE can not disapear because it is a piece of paper in a crystal
box and your paper ballot is handle by other non partisan citizen under
the scrutiny of party representative.

Beeing able to check if your vote is in the box and has not been
modified make it possible for some else to do coercision on you and ask
you to proof you voted the way he asked you!!!

> That happened to me a number of years ago. I hadn't changed address or
> anything. Never got any explanation, and ended up unable to vote.
> Meath also have an online system for checking registration.
> 
>> - Keep the polls open for up to 48 hours, including
>> one weekday and one weekend day.

The poll opening should be minimum to reduce the risk and to avoid
influance on the vote while it take place (like those voting the second
day vote based on: exit poll, latest news, rumour, ...). The voting day
is critical, it should be exempt from anything that could influance the
citizen "at the last minute".

> Good idea. I think the current postal voting system helps with this and
> is reasonably secure. You have to fill out the ballot paper in private
> at a Garda station.

Garda station??? Interesting as long as you do not vote from home under
the scrutiny of your loved one or your parent...

> Of course, it does not scale, and could never be a general solution for
> everyone.
> 
>> - Publicise all the above continuously, so every
>> citizen knows how to register/vote and where.
>>
> Absolutely. Also, the problem with ballot spoiling would be dramatically
> reduced if people knew what a spoilt ballot actually is.
?



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