Flaws in our voting system (letter)by L.B. LovedayNews Weekly
, February 2, 2008
Colin Teese has a much rosier view of the Australian electoral system than I do ("Can Rudd restore an impartial public service?", News Weekly
, December 22, 2007).
Leaving aside the incorrectness of his assertion that "we require all citizens of voting age to cast a vote" (there are both exclusions and exemptions), Australia has arguably the most rortable electoral system in the world.
Nowhere else can you vote without some form of identification. Yet we have the arrogance to send monitors to other countries.
And, prior to April 16, 2007, one did not even have to produce identification when enrolling, so most enrolments have never been verified.
I can go to a polling-booth at opening-time, give my neighbour's name and address, and vote under his name, with or without his knowledge.
I can go to each polling-booth in my electorate, voting at each, up to 60, under my name, his, or someone else's, provided I am prepared to answer "no" to the naive question, "Have you voted elsewhere today?"
Would anyone answer "yes" to that question?
The Australian Electoral Commission denies this happens, but they are just hiding their heads in the sand.
If a system can be exploited, it is, and the only question is to what extent.
People of all political leanings do it; but in my experience left-wing ideologues are more inclined to do so on the basis that the ends justifies the means, and any who hold opposing views are misguided fools.L.B. Loveday,