Thursday, 1 May 2008

Poll dancing.

During the last general election I was away from home, so today was the first time I've been able to go and cast my vote in person. I got up and left the house 15 minutes early and headed over to the community centre on the local estate, accompanied by my mum. It was very quiet and relaxed - a few people already there, on the way to work, but no queues - and we wandered up to the desk to collect our forms.

No ID required, just the production of my voting card, and verbal confirmation that I was in fact who I claimed to be, and I was on my way to the booth. The whole thing reminded me a little bit like an exam - the silence, the colour coded pieces of paper with bold clear instructions on, and the constant threat that any wrong move might invalidate the whole thing. I successfully negotiated placing my four crosses (two for mayor, one for local council, one for London Assembly) on my three pieces of paper, dropped them all in the box, and headed back outside.

As far as the mayoral contest goes, I've not been as diligent as perhaps I should have with regard to investigating policies and reading manifestos, but given that the whole thing has become so media heavy and personality-based that I'm surprised text-voting isn't valid, I don't think my lack of specific knowledge will look out of place. My vote is, of course, secret, and it would be a drastic invasion of my privacy for anyone to question me about it, but suffice to say, if any smug, floppy-haired, Tory buffoons are elected tomorrow, it'll not be by my hand.


immedia reaction said...

What so even asking how you voted is violation of privacy? I'd say I'm perfectly within my rights just to ask you how you voted without violating your privacy and you're perfectly within your rights not to tell me.

Maybe if I strapped you to a chair and started threatening to beat you about the head with a lump hammer until you told me how you'd voted you might have cause to complain..

But I don't see anything wrong with asking. People don't have to tell you. I don't usually mind saying which way I voted. If mutual disclosure takes place, an enjoyable debate may follow.

immedia reaction said...

And I just got the pun in the post title. Groan. Facepalm. Headbang. et cetera.

Anonymous said...

Make that "smug, floppy-haired, Tory buffoons" who know a thing or two about education provision.

I didn't vote at all (I didn't get round to sorting out my postal vote this time), but given the alternative is a smug, slap-headed, Labour buffoon, I know which way my vote would have gone.

happylittlecynic said...

I'm honestly not sure how to put this into words, or if it's even wise. I can't help but feeling, even if it is only a feeling, the I really, really, really don't want my city to be run by a clown.

Boris is funny. However, jokes have a habit of losing that quality once they're given the power to have consequences on people's lives.

TheTelf said...

Like I say, not the most informed person in the world on the three candidates, and each has their failings. Boris was the one I'd trust least to spend £11bn appropriately and responsibly, but whatever, let's see how he does. I'm certainly not going to be complaining if his election turns out to be a great thing for London.

Hannah: my 'privacy' comment was clearly tongue in cheek :P. I voted Paddick and Ken, in that order of preference. Are you still registered in London, then?

Bambi: Yeah, my concerns with Boris were more on an environmental front. And on a concern for how seriously he'll take the responsibilities. But like I say, clean slate - I'm very willing to see how he does.

Martin: Holy crap, you read a post on this blog?!?

happylittlecynic said...

Tee hee. Thought that would freak you out :D

immedia reaction said...

I know it was tongue in cheek. And I'm not actually going to strap you to a chair and hit you with a hammer...

And I'm afraid I didn't vote.. am registered in Shropshire. Had I voted, I would have probably made the same choice. In terms of disclosing which way one votes, I wasn't referring to this election in particular. Just thinking about votes in general.