Fun Fact Friday – Donkey Vote
It’s fucking friday. Can you believe it? I love the feeling of being done with thinking critically and trying to sound smart. Now I get to be a silly nilly and play with my kids all weekend.
I wanted to share a fun fact with you that I learned this week.
I was told about the “donkey vote” from an Australian co-worker this week in a meeting (it was probably the most productive and informational meeting I was in all week).
In Australia the citizens are required to vote. If you don’t vote, you get a fine. Crazy right? At first, I thought this was a great idea. Force everyone to vote, so that everyone has a voice.
It’s a problem in the US. Although climbing, the percentage of eligible voters in the US that actually vote is around 50% (55.5% in 2016 – estimated here). That’s so crazy to me. Why not just fucking vote? And if you’re a woman out there that doesn’t vote. oooooooooh boy. I don’t even want to believe that happens. Our fellow women fought so hard for that right. You better appreciate it.
But, back to the story – since they have this rule in Australia, they have an entirely different problem. The donkey vote. It’s fun to say but it’s a serious problem.
At first I thought this would be the “jackass vote”. Since everyone in Australia is voting to avoid the fine, even the jackasses are voting and that’s not good. If you’re a jackass – eg. you beat your wife or are mean to animals, we should take away your voting rights – and also your ability to run for president. But that isn’t a law yet. Maybe one day.
But it has nothing to do with that.
Definition: A donkey vote occurs when an elector simply numbers the ballot paper from top to bottom (or bottom to top) without regard to the logic of the preference allocation. – source
I should have previously mentioned that in Australia, they use a preferential voting system. This means the voters are asked to rank the candidates in order of preference. Since most people are just voting to avoid a fine, and they don’t really care who gets elected, they number their ballot from top to bottom. For candidates, you can see that having that top spot is desired and will most likely get you elected.
Seems like their force you to vote system is backfiring.
Isn’t that interesting! I thought so.
You can discuss it at your next dinner party – jk, mom’s can’t go to dinner parties. You can just talk about it on the playground or at work.
Let me know how it goes 🙂 oh, and HAPPY FRIDAY. We made it.