Gardiner backs Hain’s call for compulsory voting

One Assembly member has backed Peter Hain’s call for compulsory voting. Samuel Gardiner believes such a move would strengthen what he deems ‘centre ground’ parties and therefore, unsurprisingly, the Ulster Unionist MLA has called on the Secretary of State to pilot compulsory voting here in the next Assembly elections.

  • Conor Gilespie

    In the twilight years of the UUP it looks like they’re making a last bid for the support of the ‘garden protestants’ whome they themselves first disgusted back in the good ole days!

  • dodrade

    In a democracy we have the right to vote, and the right not to vote. If people are forced to vote then it is not a true democracy.

    Typical thinking from unpopular parties, instead of making themselves more attractive to the electorate, they threaten to punish those who have deserted them.

    Gardiner shouldn’t believe either that middle class Unionists would be grateful to his party for dragging them from the garden centre to the polling booths. If anything the apathetic may punish those parties who compelled them there or simply spoil their ballots in protest.

  • Conor Gillespie

    Dodrade,
    “If anything the apathetic may punish those parties who compelled them there or simply spoil their ballots in protest.”

    I completely agree. If the UUP think that they’re going to gain back the ground that the lost to the Paisleyites they’re very mistaken. No one likes being forced to support a position and chances are most non-voting Protestants know exactly why the UUP is doing this. If this does come to pass, I see a field day for Alliance.

  • Crataegus

    We should all show our displeasure and vote for the Monster Raving Looney Party.

    Spoilt for choice really.

    But seriously just think the fun the thoroughly pissed off could have by voting for Trots, McCann, Rate Payers, Greens and those rather nice local Conservatives. Roll on election day.

  • [i]”In a democracy we have the right to vote, and the right not to vote. If people are forced to vote then it is not a true democracy.”[/i]

    I think the law would be that one must go to the polls, but that doesn’t mean you have to vote once you are in the booth.

    Here on LI, the voting machines will not let you out unless you pull at least, one lever, i.e. cast one vote for someone. But, the ballot usually includes about 200 candidates for a wide variety of offices so it’s really not all that onerous a requirement.

  • Sammy,

    A lilliputian even by UUP standards. Conor is right.

  • heck

    what is it about you unionists that you like the monkey with the voting system to get the result you want.

    first it was the gerrymanded system which was engineered at the begining of the NI statelet.

    Then when one man one vote came in you complained about vote fraud and discounted the nationalist vote.

    Then the system was changed to prevent vote fraud and lo and behold the percent of SF votes went up.

    When Bobby Sands was elected the voting system was changed to prevent prisoners standing.

    then you wanted non-violence oaths from candidates.

    Now it’s compulsory voting.

    same shi* different day