Is anyone else sick of the Preferencing Lies we are fed at each and every election?! I happened to help hand out preferencing cards at the 2010 Federal Election, and the amount of waste at this single electoral location was hideous.. Every party would be giving them to every person they could, regardless of whether people wanted them or not, and 10 seconds later they’d be in the bin, or worse, lying on the ground.. Thankfully ours were made from recycled materials, however, it’s still ridiculous..
That’s really a side note to my main point here though.. So much ‘horse-trading’ is painted in the media, due to political parties ‘preferencing’ each other in individual electorates… And this charade is painted to the public like if you vote for the Greens, your vote will go to Labor, or if you vote for the Liberals, your vote will go to the Greens, but it’s all just rubbish..
Only once have I ever heard someone try to explain the fact to the public, that each individual voter chooses who they preference… If I want to vote Greens, then Liberal, then Labour, that’s my choice and more importantly, I CAN! No party is stopping me from doing so…
Sure enough, in the Upper House/Senate, it’s a little bit different. You can choose to only place one number in the box, and use the predetermined preferences, but YOU DON’T HAVE TO! You can preference in whatever order you want, that’s the point of democracy!
Personally, I think the whole preferencing war distracts from the real issues of elections. Not only are ‘how to vote’ cards a waste of paper, but they can be misleading and should be banned!
At the very least, if they must remain, I would insist that each booth has a laminated how to vote card attached to it, that people can view when they vote.. But otherwise, parties can’t hand out such material outside…
Any arguments against this logic? I honestly don’t see the value in allowing preferencing deals.. I think it’s fine that we can preference when we vote, I think that makes sense (although I can also see how proportional voting is also a valid system, such as in Tasmania/Senate), but that’s another topic again anyway..
An end to ‘how to vote’ cards is my message! Each individual voter should be able to make their own minds up as to who they vote for..
Related article here (more so about the preferencing deals) – http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2010/11/18/3069503.htm