[LINK] Voters could log on to skip the ballot box

David Boxall david.boxall at hunterlink.net.au
Sat Sep 26 20:14:51 AEST 2009

On Thu, 24 Sep 2009 at 09:08:46 +1000 Bernard Robertson-Dunn wrote:
> ... the government has also thrown 
> open the option of enabling citizens to cast their vote online.
Unless they address the issues raised many times on Link, online voting 
just isn't a goer.
> The green paper canvasses removing compulsory voting and an overhaul of 
> the system of electing MPs, including optional preferential voting for 
> the lower house. It also seeks comment on whether individuals should be 
> automatically added to the electoral roll, whether non-citizens should 
> vote and whether exclusions on voting should be maintained for prisoners 
> of three years or more.
> The green paper is part of the second stage of the government's overhaul 
> of the electoral system. The first stage focused on donations and 
> campaign financing.
> The opposition's spokesman on affairs of state, Michael Ronaldson, 
> immediately attacked the idea of online voting. "I remain deeply 
> sceptical about any changes to the mechanics of voting," he said. 
> Instead, the government needed to crack down on those who failed to vote 
> or enrol. "The current penalties for failing to enrol, or keep that 
> enrolment up to date, or for not voting, are, in my view, grossly 
> inadequate," he said.
Much as I dislike agreeing with a Liberal, I agree with that one.
> ...
> The Rudd government will also focus on changes that would lead to more 
> Australians casting a valid vote, including possibly extending the 
> close-of-rolls period once an election had been called.
> Senator Ludwig told the AEC seminar in Canberra yesterday that at the 
> 2007 federal election, more than 2.3 million Australians who were 
> entitled to vote did not have their votes counted. "Our democracy is 
> poorer for it," he said. "I would like to see us working on all fronts 
> to maximise participation."
> He said the last major overhaul of the Electoral Act was 25 years ago 
> and it was time to look at whether it needed updating. The green paper 
> also looks at the possibly of lowering the voting age.

I reckon there are better reasons for *raising* the voting age. Nobody 
under 30 has the life experience to make intelligent choices at the 
polls. Of course, nobody under that age should be allowed to control a 
motor vehicle on the Queen's highway either. :-)
David Boxall                    |  Dogs look up to us
                                |  And cats look down on us
http://david.boxall.name        |  But pigs treat us as equals
                                                   --Winston Churchill

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