View Full Version : Postal Votes

1st May 2005, 08:57
There has been a lot about postal and proxy votes in the news but I haven't heard anyone mention envelopes ......... you know ........ returning your vote ........ by post......... for the purpose of..... :confused:

Well I did my vote on Friday, had it witnessed and went to put it into the clever-looking contraption which is supposed to make into an envelope.

The instructions were not helpful and I ended up making a complete mess of it and had to sellotape the thing shut. Hopefully this won't invalidate my vote!

I thought that it was my stupidity and lack of dexterity which had caused me to do this until I spoke to my son at university, who also needs a postal vote, and he said that he'd had a lot of trouble with his envelope and the instructions were total [email protected]

You would honestly think they could make the thing easy - these things should be foolproof ........ there are a lot of fools out there after all!!!!! :mad: :mad:

Any other fools like us??

1st May 2005, 09:37
......had to sellotape the thing shut. Hopefully this won't invalidate my vote!
Lots of red tape would heve been a better guarantee of acceptance.

Otherwise, no probs. I have a book on Origami......

.......and a male brain. I can think outside the envelope. :rolleyes:

.......or is that a mail brain? :confused:

1st May 2005, 09:49
Mine came with 2 proper envelopes - one to seal your vote in and then a bigger one to enclose the vote envelope and the witness paper... postage paid too!


1st May 2005, 10:06
Same two-envelope trick up in Angus.

1st May 2005, 10:51
Mine came with two proper envelopes too.

1st May 2005, 10:54
Voting is anonymous, so how come my girlfriends and my postal ballot have consecutive serial numbers on the back.

Will Robert Mugabe be invited to be an observer?

1st May 2005, 11:46
It's worse than that, M.Mouse. Your ballot paper has a number on the back; the same number is on the personalised address label used to send the ballot paper to you. Same problem if you vote in person though, they write the ballot paper number next to your name when you turn up vote. It's quite easy to find out who you voted for, if they wanted to.

1st May 2005, 15:23
Students obviously in the process of learning how things work get two ballots??? lucky devils.

This postal balloting is beginning to take on a distinct piscine odour to it.

1st May 2005, 15:34
Yeah I got 2 lots of voting forms too!

The ones for here on the Island and then on Friday the ones for my old address in Surrey - forwarded by Royal Mails redirection service!


1st May 2005, 15:41
bloody hell, just how many votes will be cast in the coming election??????????

1st May 2005, 16:08
I had the origami version to here, but luckily for me it seemed to work without a hitch....

3rd May 2005, 19:59
Watching the news the other night about a seaside place in the south east.I didn't catch the name, but it normally has about 4000 postal votes cast at a general election, this time 18000 applications were applied for and sent out. Methinks much fiddling may be evident this time around and I never thought it would happen here..

tony draper
3rd May 2005, 20:15
A good idea might be to include a black opaque adhesive strip the voter sticks over his or her selection, nobody will know what the choice is until it is torn off at the count, twould discourage the fiddling,apparently last timesome were being counted and passed even with the original x tipexed out.
If something isn't done about the potential for fraud we are going to finish up with a situation like Florida,endless legal quarrels over disputed results.
Makes the lawyers happy I suppose.

4th May 2005, 05:47
Scratch cards.....:}

They could have prizes........holiday in Cleethorpes for first correct(?) vote to be pulled out of a hat.

Plus, I've never been pulled out of a hat.

In fact, just being pulled would be good.

Curious Pax
4th May 2005, 11:48
I believe that the envelopes are opened as they are returned, and the ballot papers stored for counting on the night, whilst the signature stuff is stored separately in case of a legal challenge later. The 2 pieces of paper can then only be matched up if a court order is granted (equates to a search warrant I guess). This is second hand from some in-laws who are earning some extra cash doing envelope opening, and counting on the night.

Nil nos tremefacit
4th May 2005, 13:41
Postal votes are collected together and then opened at an agreed time and place. Candidates and agents are invited to be present at the opening of postal votes. The votes are piled face down on a table, if done correctly, and nobody sees how they are doing until the big night. The votes are then sealed up until the main count.

Ballots are numbered to prevent fraud. It is possible to establish from a ballot paper and a marked register which way someone has voted, but it takes a court order to open up the votes and match them up. This was done in the Birmingham case where ballots had been tippexed and changed by cheats, thieves and crooks from, in this case, the Labour Party. Electors were contacted and confirmed that they didn't vote Labour. This has to be done reasonably quickly since ballots are destroyed after a set period.

It is also possible for up to 6 months after an election to purchase a copy of the marked register to see who has actually voted, but not which way. Political parties often do this to establish where to target in future elections. If someone can't be bothered to vote year on year why waste money sending them a leaflet. It also allows parties to match those who voted against canvass returns. On the doorstep people give all sorts of promises to get rid of candidates and canvassers and then stay at home.

I've been to many elections in different countries as an international election observer (currently have invites to Albania and Kyrgyzstan). Many suggestions have been used elsewhere, but we seem to be the only country that has postal voting. I don't think that election observers would look favourably on postal voting in some of the places I've been to - bad enough having people with guns roaming around trying to improve the turnout or deter voting depending on the situation.

I've seen the odd minor fraudulent behaviour, but some observers have seen things that would truly depress a believer in democracy. In the Russian Duma elections at a military base the Colonel marched the men to the polling station first thing in the morning. Took all the IDs into the station and voted on behalf of his regiment. 100% turn out before lunch and all the votes cast for one man!!! In Bosnia the polling station staff at one station filled in all the unused ballot papers at the end of the day! I was lucky, I was running a polling station in Kosovo and the day before the election NATO securtiy forces found 8 RPG-7s intended to blow us all to kingdom come - still got my windows put in, but that's fledgling democracies for you:rolleyes:

5th May 2005, 20:30
I had a postal vote because I am away from home.

I know when I log in to Pprune in the morning or possibly the afternoon/evening (we're 2 hours ahead) that there will be a lot of much more useful info and comment than on any of the other internet sources, about the outcome of the election, etc.

I am looking forward to it because nobody here gives a stuff!! (Especially the Brits.) :cool: :cool:

I have to say that I think Pprune is a very good information tool, and certainly not just about aviation!! :)