How can low percentage turnouts in important elections be improved?
Recently in the UK we had local council elections and the turnout was very low - only about 1 in 3 voted. Is this the same in your country? If so, how can it be improved?
The answer is for us to adopt the system in Australia and NZ (& probably a few other countries) where it is mandatory to vote. Lots of people fought hard to gain the vote (especially for women) so the least we can do is bother to turn out, even if we choose to spoil our vote. Laziness and apathy are no excuse; it's our responsibility to have our voice heard.
Some people are apathetic about going out to vote. Some find it hard to get to the polling places. Everyone does not have a vehicle and some can't walk that far.
Trying to get more people to the polling places would be labor intensive but doable if you could find the volunteers to help. Some people could go out into the public and make sure people are registered and help people get to the polling places. Use of public transportation to help pick people up and get them there would be greatly appreciated. Perhaps by suspending fees to get to the polling places.Most areas that I know of, do not make an effort like this to get people to the polling places and some find it very hard to get there.
Is there the possibility of postal voting where you are?
Yes, there is postal voting but too many are not even registered to vote. They need to get people out to get them registered and set up for voting. Then more might go vote.
In the non-Presidental primaries in the U.S., 1 in 4 to 1 in 3 (of those registered) showing up to vote would be about average. There would have to be honesty in reporting and in campaign advertisements to get people to see what their real interests are before this would change. Now, voting is simply a popularity contest on little importance.
A low turnout is a sign that people do not trust the politicians because they do not act in the interest of the people who elect them but in the interest of their masters, Big Finance and other criminal institutions. The turnout can only be improved if the politicians show that they are ready to act in the interest of the people.
Alian I am in the UK to and would say generally local elections have a lower turnout than general elections but even they have been dropping. If you look at the data for the rest of europe you will find a similar pattern over the past twenty years.
Why is this happening politicians do not inspire people anymore, they tow a party line and are led by economists and media studies reseachers. Galloway's win was great not because I support him but because he did the work and appealed to the local population.
1) Make Election Day a national holiday. (It isn't in the US, and it should be.)
2) Provide Early Voting or vote-by-mail services.
3) Provide carpool services to the polls
4) Online voting is being looked at as a future option, if it can be made safe enough.
Basically, make it so convenient to vote that people would have to consciously work to avoid it.
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