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General Election - Are you voting?

Will you be voting in the next election?  

26 members have voted

  1. 1. Will you be voting in the next election?

    • Yes
      22
    • No
      4


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I will be - I've voted every election since my 18th birthday... which is only 3-4 years :P

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I know it's a cliche but i have to vote becasue of what previous generations have done to allow me to live in a (sort of) democracy. I feel it's not just a right, it's also a duty to vote.

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Guest Zenith

I've voted in every election since my 18th as well.

1992, 1997, 2001, 2005, 2010 as well as Welsh Assembly and Euro elections.

I live in the 6th most markinal constituency in the UK where the Tories got a majority of 133 in 2005. I'm hoping to extend that majority. :)

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Zenith ... you're Welsh ... how can you possibly vote Tory! That's like someone from Lancashire supporting Yorkshire. It's just not cricket!

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I don't get all the norhterners saying they couldn't vote conservative because of the beleifs of their parents or why they are so against a party because of their upbringing. It makes no sense to my logical brain which says you should support the party which agrees with your beliefs.

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I don't get all the norhterners saying they couldn't vote conservative because of the beleifs of their parents or why they are so against a party because of their upbringing. It makes no sense to my logical brain which says you should support the party which agrees with your beliefs.

conservatives made huge headway in the local elections up here last year... They gained a lot including one area which had been labour for like 30 years or something...

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In this country we have a right to vote and choose our government, it's a waste not to.

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In this country we have a right to vote and choose our government, it's a waste not to.

Couldn't agree more, I don't think people can moan about how shit everything is if they aren't willing to spend 20 minutes of their time voting, those votes give us the power to make a change, in one way or another.

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I like to bitch about politics... if I didn't vote I wouldn't be able to justify that :D

Quoted for the truth of this statement!

You cannot moan or complain about the government unless you have voted!

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It makes no sense to my logical brain which says you should support the party which agrees with your beliefs.
I support and vote for the party that agrees with my beliefs ... I certainly wouldn't vote for the party that I didn't agree with?!

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I certainly wouldn't vote for the party that I didn't agree with?!

I would, if I disagreed with all the other parties more.

Honestly I don't 100% agree with any of them.

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Voted in every election since I was 18.

For those that believe its al the same stuff I advice them to spoil ballots rather than not vote at all, at least that shows that you actually care.

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I certainly wouldn't vote for the party that I didn't agree with?!

I would, if I disagreed with all the other parties more.

Honestly I don't 100% agree with any of them.

After contemplating the above comments ... I'd say I'd have to agree!

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Sorry, but spoiling ballots really doesn't show anything, yes it's a number that's read out at the count, but the number of people who intentionally spoil ballots isn't in anyway separated from those people who are too stupid to read the instructions and vote correctly or don't mark their paper clearly. They don't read out "here is the number of ballot papers spoiled by people who can't be arsed to read the instructions and "here is the number of people making a stupid point"

All it does is wastes the time of the people involved in the count and further delays the result while the presiding officer has to decide what to do with them. It doesn't count for anything, it won't cause the election to be re-run.

The biggest statistic of voter apathy isn't the number of spoiled ballots, it's the decreasing turnout.

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Winbar, I have studied politics to degree level it is a tool that is used to analyse how voters are feeling. They can't tell the difference between spoilt ballots and people making a protest, but they have baseline figures from which you work out the deviation from. First past the post is a straight forward system that most understand, when you change and have single transferable vote or regional list thats when you get more human errors especially if theses are tacked onto "normal" style elections.

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Great, we can do maths with the numbers.

Will the person who gets voted in go back at those numbers and really care? Are they going to vote for/against party proposals because they think a handful of people are making a point by spoiling their papers?

Ultimately, it's never going to make a difference by doing it, a candidate is going to get voted in at the end of the count, you may as well use your vote to get the best (or least worst) candidate voted in.

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Guest Zenith
Zenith ... you're Welsh ... how can you possibly vote Tory! That's like someone from Lancashire supporting Yorkshire. It's just not cricket!

It's simple for me. I remember the Winter of Discontent in 1978 and the effect it had on my folks. I remember the rolling brown-outs, the union militancy, the poor state of the economy, politicians being held in contempt by the public, the fact I couldn't watch my favourite cartoons on TV. :)

Fast forward to 2010 and history is repeating... union militancy, poor state of the economy, politicians being held in contempt by the public, poor planning on energy security... and I don't really watch cartoons any more. :)

Finally there is only one single issue that I care about and the Conservatives are the only ones who have stated a position I agree with.

Scrapping ID cards and the National Identity Register.

All other considerations are secondary IMO.

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Spoiling ballots as a means to protest (against all the politicians being "the same") says to me more about the attitude of the person who isn't voting, than it does about the politicians.

There are two groups of non-voters; People don't vote because they can't be bothered and people don't vote because they say that "there isn't anyone worth voting for". Although this second group is trying to distinguish themselves from the first, in truth they also just can't be bothered. Most of them probably couldn't even tell you why all of the parties are "as bad as each other". They blame the (often quite real) problems that we have with politicians today for their own lack of action.

Put simply we're all Human and none of us are perfect. Voting is about picking the least bad apple in the basket. We can't blame the politicians for the non-voters which can't be bothered to pick which of the parties that he/she thinks will mess up the least. Yes the politicians don't help the situation by being cryptic, dodging questions, breaking promises, etc. Neither does the media, but ultimately the responsibility of not voting lies with the non-voter.

Going around screaming that "none of them are worth voting for" while not participating in the election, just doesn't do anyone any good. No matter how you do the screaming - whether it's through a blog, out of a window, or by spoiling ballot papers. (At best the non-voter becomes a statistic which will probably be discussed and then dutifully ignored, as winbar points out.)

Not voting (even as a means of protest) is the equivalent of dodging the question. Which is ironically a big part of what the non-voter is supposedly protesting against / complaining about.

Anyone who seriously and honestly thinks that voting is pointless because whoever gets in will just mess it up really hasn't thought it through logically. If after thinking it through they still really believe that voting is pointless, then they're lying to themselves. Not voting (including being a statistic via ballot spoiling) just results in other voters having more of a say. Anyone spoiling a ballot paper is quite simply wasting everyone's time.

Instead of wasting people's time I would highly encourage anyone who believes that "all the parties are the same" to do 4 simple things.

1. Ensure that they are registered to be able to vote. http://www.aboutmyvote.co.uk/ is an ideal quick way to do that.

2. Vote for one of the parties whenever the opportunity comes up. I will happily tell you which one if you ask me and I dare say that you could do worse than accept my advice. Ultimately though which party you vote for is your choice. Whether to vote or not really isn't a choice you should be considering - you should always vote.

3. Write a letter (shorter than this forum post is fine) to their MP explaining what they mean by "all the parties are the same". http://www.writetothem.com/ is an ideal quick way to do that.

4. Share copies of the letter with others, either via a blog posting or perhaps just by sending it to a local newspaper, or parish bulletin and hoping that they have a slow news day (or an influx of such letters).

Oh.. yeah.. and if that's too much effort then I advise they stop pretending, be honest and admit that really they don't vote because they can't be bothered. (People who tell me CBA don't get the above speech, people who make up an excuse do)

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Woudl compulsoary voting with a none of the above box be a solution?

My gut feeling says that getting your arse down to the voting box should be compulsory and there those that say we dont' want to vote or don't know who to vote for would have a suitable box.

Downsides : Is it democratic? Hwo would you police it (potential fixed fines based on voter records)

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It makes no sense to my logical brain which says you should support the party which agrees with your beliefs.
I support and vote for the party that agrees with my beliefs ... I certainly wouldn't vote for the party that I didn't agree with?!

The point is that I have heard a lot of interview say " I voted labour because my parents always did so"

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In this day and age it makes me sad that you still can't vote from your computer. It would make a lot more people vote and would hardly be a difficult system to setup. Guess the government is always the last to move with technology.

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