14 Oct 2011 Elections are safer on paper
Surrey Leader, Oct 13: Online voting is touted by many as the great solution to the problem of decreasing voter participation in the election process. Apparently municipal politicians are also among the growing movement clamouring for change to the way we vote as they approved a resolution to that effect at the recent Union of BC Municipalities Convention in Vancouver.
I submit that should we move to an online method of voting, we will quickly see voter turnouts decrease even further. With online (or electronic) voting there is far greater opportunity for fraud and tampering on the part of those who manage the would-be system.
On the other hand the paper ballot system we use now is virtually foolproof as each marked ballot is viewed by at least three people. Our current method is envied by many, especially Americans, who have gone almost exclusively to the electronic system.
Decreasing voter turnout is not due to the fact Canadians have lost faith in our process of voting. To the contrary, participation has steadily decreased because voters have less and less faith in the politicians themselves.
Changing the way we vote isn’t going to solve this fundamental problem. We need to address the root of the problem – voter apathy. And for that, our politicians do well to point the finger straight back at themselves
Mike Schouten, Surrey
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