Better Democracy NZ is a non-partisan, non-profit organisation.

Our mission is to foster the improvement of New Zealand's democratic system and encourage the use of direct democracy through the

Veto, Citizens' Initiated and Recall referendum.


Thursday, 5 February 2009

Pathetic Voter Turnout in 2008 elections

The records show that in the 2008 election only 78.69% of New Zealanders' cast their vote. That means over 20%, more than one in

every five people, didn’t even bother to vote. When I came across those facts I had to ask myself the question… why don’t all these people bother to vote? The conclusion I came to was that people know their vote really means very little in the scheme of things. Generally we have an apathy to voting because we know that once we elect our politicians we have no control over them and we distrust them. On top of that very few of us agree with everything each of the party’s want to do. They all have their good points and their bad points. Surely we don’t expect each party to be right all the time and have all the right answers?

However when we vote, that is exactly what we are voting for, a party to be right all the time. To my way of thinking that just isn't right. We should have the democratic right to reject policies that affect each and every one of us on an individual basis when we feel the need to.


Anonymous said...

I totally agree with all of the above. Parties can not be right all the time, because people are not perfect by any means. At least with Binding Referendums we would be sending that message to politicians. Corruption comes when too much control is in the hands of so few. Why even allow this possibility?

Anonymous said...

We couldn't agree more. We as voters are entitled to to more than 1 day of democracy every 3 years.

Anonymous said...

Some, and I am one of those, think the idea of Political Parties are the problem. Each Politician should be voted according to their individual ideas and character.
At present we have a weird sort of lottery.

Steve Baron said...

But in reality, even if we abolished parties as such, we might have a Parliament full of Independents but sooner or later they would end up voting along the same lines as parties do. It is human nature for like minds to join together. Parties are not the problem, it is the power we give these parties which is the problem.

Anonymous said...

I still disagree. A house full of Independents could vote in blocks on certain issues but be free to vote anyway with any other block at any time. I think Left/Right, Liberal/Conservative and Republican/Democrat are just vehicles that lazy individuals hitch a ride on.
Start voting for integrity and I believe we can achieve things. After all some issues require socialist solutions while others require free enterprise solutions. Parties lend themselves to protective factions, point scoring, grandstanding and pork barrel politics. Ban Political Parties I say!