Of course compulsory voting is a good thing _ Van Badham _ Comment is free _ theguardian

Com f rom the neo libertarian crowd their opposition

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Unformatted text preview: f rom the neo-libertarian crowd. Their opposition to compulsory voting is usually expressed in the identical vocabulary of waaaaaaaaaaah as their resistance to wearing seatbelts, educating their children with other people's children, not plastering stores' shelves with titty-porn, and being told they really shouldn't smoke in f ront of a baby. Compulsory voting is also opposed by politicians keen to attack it f or partisan advantage. As recently as the last Liberal government in 2004, the inf ernal f ormer Liberal senator Nick Minchin had to be stopped f rom within his own party f rom removing a provision that has been our nation's democratic backbone f or 89 years. W e can all be gratef ul that, at least in this instance, everyone's f avourite Liberal-of -last-resort, Petro Georgiou, f ound a f laming sword of suf f icient brightness to banish Satan back to his cave. Liberals of Minchin's ilk have realpolitik reasons to campaign against compulsory voting. I n the vast majority of countries where voting is optional – especially the liberal democratic states of the W est most demographically similar to our own – it's a long established f act that voting turnout is massively concentrated amongst those communities with higher levels of education, urbanity, wealth, health, control of their own time and the other privileges of inherited social capital. More most viewed Last 24 hours 1. How to make a drug confession without scaring the electorate | Oscar Rickett Detailed com paris on The PM Machine 2. A book that changed me: reader choices Take the tes t Leader campaign w atch 3. President Obama should listen to US and UK public: don't strike Syria | Mark Weisbrot 4. The Democratic advantage in the electoral college may be waning | Harry J Enten Every electorate vis it Voting system 5. Is art to blame for gentrification? | Matt Bolton All today's stories c om m ent is f ree… How does it work? Late st posts 20min ago How to make a drug confession w ithout scaring the electorate Os car Ricke tt: The Toronto mayor's statements on drug use are part of a well- worn set of answers that prevents an honest debate on prohibition 6 comment s The voters who tend to vanish are, of course, poor, isolated, minimally educated, sick, low-paid, casualised or vulnerable. I n o...
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