Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Online Voting, Good For Voters, Better For Democracy

Online voting is the next evolutionary step in our democracy, as it evolves so too will our political system, and we will all be the better for it.

In the BC Liberal leadership race, candidate Christy Clark announced yesterday that if elected Premier she will begin considering adopting online voting for provincial elections.

When considering the prevalence of technology and our growing reliance on its devices, not to mention the BC Liberal leadership vote on February 26th that will be conducted solely online or by phone, it is evident that online voting for general elections will happen, it's just a matter of time and leadership. Online voting is the future of our democracy, and it is with Christy Clark that British Columbia will lead that change.

One of the most troubling problems we face not just as a province but as a country is dwindling voter turnout; when governments are held accountable by less and less people, we all suffer. Online voting will not only solve this problem within our democracy, but it will improve our political system by forcing political parties to reach out to more voters.

As online voting will drastically increase the ease and viability of voting, it will correspondingly increase voter turnout. This evolution in our democracy will in turn begin another evolutionary process involving our political system.

With the increase in voting, political parties subsequently and necessarily will be forced to appeal to those additional voters. If a party doesn't attempt to sway online voters, if it doesn't attempt to convince those new voters to vote for their party, another party will, and as the fittest survives, not only will our democracy flourish but so too will our political system.

Political parties never fight over a vote that is never cast. We need to increase voter turnout to increase competition within our political parties, online voting will do that and Christy Clark is the leader to make that happen.

12 comments:

Volkov said...

Eh. They did online voting in the municipal elections here, and almost nothing came out of it. People were slightly interested at the door, but turnout was still hilariously low. Plus, it wasn't hard to circumvent it, in all honesty. I doubt anyone took the time to do so, though...

thescottross.blogspot.com said...

Well voter turnout did increase 3% in Burlington (2006 had 34.8% and 2010 had 37.5%). Which isn't a drastic increase, but considering turnout increased for a municipal election that's pretty good.

Now there could of been other factors that were responsible for that increase, but with anything, change isn't over night. That was also the first election that was online.

Did see an early report that a lot of people liked online voting in Burlington because it was easier.

ridenrain said...

Not even a hanging chad to argue about anymore. I'm not sure about this.

thescottross.blogspot.com said...

Ridenrain, I understand the hesitation, but in 50, let alone 20 years, with our increased use of technology, I don't think you could suggest we wouldn't be utilizing online voting. We have to accept things change, and change with them.

Robert McClelland said...

I can't wait for online voting because I know lots of people who don't vote that would let me vote for them. Voter fraud, here we come.

thescottross.blogspot.com said...

Robert good for you for wanting to commit fraud. You are a good person with good morals.

Forget about the fact that under our current system people can vote for others and that with an online system votes can be cast with technology you have clue of. Forget all of that because you are a role model of a good citizen.

Robert McClelland said...

You completely missed the point. Online voting would make our elections susceptible to massive voter fraud that can be done with nothing more than a mouse click.

thescottross.blogspot.com said...

I find it amazing you know how online voting would work when you have no idea of the technology to be used. Moral and a fortune teller, amazing.

Robert McClelland said...

Oops, my mistake. You used to be someone that wanted an exchange of ideas. But clearly you've become just another self righteous libflogger living in an echo chamber. I shant bother you again with any disagreement.

thescottross.blogspot.com said...

I treat people who leave serious comments seriously. People who leave ridiculous exaggerations flaunting how they'll committ fraud, I have no respect for.

marie said...

On line voting is only good for those who have computers and Internet. The very young have them but the elderly very often do not even own a Cp let alone use the Internet. Some provisions and poll stations would still have to be set up for these people.

There are a lot of people who have no interest for cps or and or can't afford them. These very people do not even do use a debit card because they do not trust them and still like to be served by a living person.

Robert has a point about voting for others. Most of us would not use it to our advantage but reading some of the blogs on NP & G&M,that sort of stuff would be happening all the time.

It would be great for those of us who do have Cp's and the Internet but absolutely not for the thousands who don't. I have friends that have Cps, connected to the Internet and use them strictly to play games. I also have friends that do not trust the Internet to even search the net because of all the virus's they hear about.

Online voting is an option but there would also need to be other options for those I mentioned.

thescottross.blogspot.com said...

Marie, it's easier to make fake ballots for a regular election than it is to cheat on an online vote. I know of two people who vote a way because their spouses tell them to vote that way, and that's without online voting.

We don't measure paper ballots by perfection so why should we measure online voting by perfection? Especially when our current system is much more dependent on thousands upon thousands of people who each can rig the election.

I agree other options would need to still exist as a supplement.