Monday, June 30, 2008

Democracy in Action: Vote...or else.

Debate underway today in the Knesset...

Current Status: The National Election Day in Israel is already considered a paid vacation day (national holiday) for anyone who works.

Proposed Amendment by MK Gidon Sa'ar: Any employed person who does not vote in the national election day, will be penalized, and have their pay deducted (equivalent to one day's work).

Result: Its the equivalent of a fine if you don't vote.

Over time, the percentage of voters from the eligible voter population has been decreasing from the founding of the State (86.9% voting...and decreasing to the last election in 2006 with only 63.5%).

So, should one be "forced" to vote? While I'm in favor of voting, I'm not sure this is the best way to education people about democracy.

% Voting; Voter Pop ; Year ; Israeli Election

86.9% 506,567 1949 1
75.1% 924,885 1951 2
82.8% 1,057,795 1955 3
81.6% 1,218,483 1959 4
83.0% 1,271,285 1961 5
83.0% 1,499,709 1965 6
81.7% 1,748,710 1969 7
78.6% 2,037,478 1973 8
79.2% 2,236,293 1977 9
78.5% 2,490,014 1981 10
78.8% 2,654,613 1984 11
79.7% 2,894,267 1988 12
77.4% 3,409,015 1992 13
79.3% 3,933,250 1996 14
78.7% 4,285,428 1999 15
62.3% 4,504,769 2001 (Prime Minister elections)
68.9% 4,720,074 2003 16
63.5% 5,014,622 2006 17

Wherever I am, my blog turns towards Eretz Yisrael טובה הארץ מאד מאד


Anonymous said...

Australia does the same thing - vote or you get fined. Davkaniks have been known to be jailed for refusing to pay the fine. Practically though, when the fine comes, you can write back that you were sick in bed and unable to vote. The fine is then withdrawn

Jameel @ The Muqata said...

Here, they would probably put a lien on your house, car and first born child.

Gee a Moron said...

Note also that while no matter who you are your vote counts equally, a fine equal to a day's pay depends on your salary.

There is also no negative fine for one who votes and works.

On the past election day I was disenfranchised because the polling place opened late. I showed up before the 07:00 opening time because I had an 09:30 plane to catch that morning but I couldn't hang around till they got their act together.

bec said...

big brother is make sure you exercise your freedom to vote.
hmmm....irony at work.

Anonymous said...

Why vote? We end up with the same exact crappy politicians after every election.

Gila said...

We could probably end up with better politicians if people actually cared enough to get involved and vote!

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