Archive for the ‘Low Turnouts & Social Media’ Category

UK drive to recruit 100,000 expat voters - The Telegraph

Samedi, février 28th, 2015

The Electoral Commission has set itself a tough pre-election target, but disillusioned expats are unlikely to bite, according to campaigners in this Telegraph article of 3 February, 2015.

Shouldn’t campaigners feel more confident given the support by the Conservative party headed by the Prime Minister below?

“Mr Cameron sent a mass email to expats on the party mailing list, telling them they could hold the key to the Conservatives winning the next election. The party has pledged to restore voting rights to all Britons overseas if it wins. Currently expats lose their right to vote once they have been out of the country for 15 years.”

Future e-voting in the UK?

Jeudi, janvier 1st, 2015

The article below by Leala Padmanabhan on the BBC News Politics website, questions whether e-voting is on its way in the UK:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-30234304

“Another argument in favour stems from voter disengagement and low turnout in many democracies around the world, including the UK, where nearly 16 million people did not vote at the last election. E-voting encourages participation, say campaigners, especially among young people.
“There’s a fantastic head of steam now behind this issue,” says Graham Allen, the Labour MP who chairs the Political and Constitutional Reform Committee.
In a report on voter engagement published last month , the committee recommended that the government should run online voting pilots in the next parliament “with a view to all electors having the choice of voting online at the 2020 general election”.

“I couldn’t have got my committee to agree to recommend online voting a year ago but people realise our democracy is broken and we have to find radical ways to fix it,” Mr Allen said.”

With up to three million young people not having decided how to vote in next year’s general election, according to a think tank, the Conservative party as a first step needs to use the internet and social media more effectively.

British Citizen Living Abroad? Here’s a voting message from the Prime Minister.

Mercredi, décembre 24th, 2014

Here’s a message from Prime Minister David Cameron:

Who do you know who lives abroad?

Of the 5 million British people living abroad, virtually none are registered to vote - even though it now only takes a few minutes to do so. Encourage your friends to register - “share” this post or send them this link: http://www.overseasvote2015.com/

https://www.facebook.com/DavidCameronOfficial/photos/
a.658575084166813.1073741829.653092548048400/896304423727210/?type=1

Chasing the Wrong Target - by Michael Webster

Mardi, août 20th, 2013

Considerable efforts have been devoted in recent years to obtain the right to vote for those who have been expatriates for more than 15 years, although most of these may be thought to have lost their links with any constituency back home and the ability to choose between the candidates for election there.

A far more important problem is this. There are estimated to be about 5 - 6 million British citizens living abroad, of whom 1.5 million or 30% are not eligible to vote. Let us suppose that half a million are underage, leaving 1 million deprived by the 15-year-ruling.

According to a recent Parliamentary Commission, of the 3.5 million entitled to vote only 20,000, yes 20,000 , are registered to vote. Surely this is the real problem. How to get those who have already the right to do so to exercise that right rather than seek it for those who have been expatriates for countless years.

Michael Webster

Low Turnouts & Social Media

Samedi, août 25th, 2012

Why at a time of increasing disengagement from the political process in a democratic society, are British citizens in general not more actively encouraged, or indeed inspired in the case of the younger generation, to vote?
The latest example of likely low turnout from the effect of a lack of engagement with the British electorate, would seem to concern the new elections planned in November for Police & Crime Commissioners (PCCs) and for which the Electoral Reform Society is currently projecting a turnout of less than 20%.This would be even less than the poor turnout of 31% for the local elections in May, which itself was down from the 35% turnout in 2008 (see Electoral Commission report - 2012-english-locals-election-report-web).
The PCC election process, therefore, does not currently present a good example of local democracy in action unless actual voter turnout levels on the day prove otherwise. As for the May 2012 local government elections, however, should turnout again be poor the local electorate will still live with the “democratic” outcome; they will keep their democratic right to choose to vote or not, irrespective of turnout levels.
This does not mean that low turnouts are acceptable in a democratic society and the question is how to improve matters and particularly for the younger generation? Social media springs to mind where 18 - 24 year olds are concerned and it has already been noted that twice as many of this generation have subscribed to Facebook as have registered to vote. It is interesting then to compare differing articles on Why social media will solve the problem of local voter apathy countered by why Social media cannot solve the problem of local disengagement.