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Optional Voting

And Good Morning yet again John,

You had a caller earlier who claimed that people over the age of 80 should not be forced to vote because either they might not live until the next election, or it is too hard to get to a polling booth.

Well the first argument is nuts in my mind…none of us are guaranteed to live until the next election…does that mean we should all get optional voting? Optional voting isn't something you can give to one group and not another, and I personally think it should remain compulsory.

As for the second point, well we have this thing called a postal vote…and I believe that the electoral commission can visit people in hospitals, so if it is too hard to get to the polling booth, you do have other options.

I would hate to miss out on my chance to shape the future of the nation, and it upsets me that others don't see their right to vote in the same light, and treat it with as much respect.

Regards,
Samuel Gordon-Stewart
Canberra

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#1 Comment By seepi On March 17, 2007 @ 10:38 am

They set up polling booths at nursing homes too.

But just quietly, my grandmother tells me that after you’re 80, they send you a letter asking why you didn’t vote, but don’t fine you for not voting, and after 90 they don’t even bother asking why you didn’t vote.

#2 Comment By Samuel On March 17, 2007 @ 12:25 pm

There’s no shortage of polling booths, and between them and the postal votes I don’t really see the problem.

It would probably be a bit unfair to fine people over 80 for not voting as the number of people in that age group who would suffer from all sorts of ailments could make voting very difficult…if we had a national ID card though then I think the AEC would be checking your health records, and that would be going a bit over the top.