Legal Beagle by Graeme Edgeler

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Legal Beagle: Election Fact Check #3: It shouldn't be this way

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  • Joe Wylie, in reply to Hebe,

    I loathe that orange twerp.

    Not so much a boil on the bum as a kind of ingrown toenail of democracy. Has a Facebook page where he fields questions from a patsyish fanbase & cultivates the semblance of a minimal personality. Wall photos include the B52's 1st album. 9th pic depicts sleeping seals & is mysteriously dedicated to Graeme Edgeler.

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 4591 posts Report Reply

  • Chris Waugh,

    and have lived here for one or more years.

    According to Elections New Zealand:

    You cannot enrol if:

    • you are a New Zealand citizen who is outside New Zealand and has not been in New Zealand within the last 3 years or
    • you are a permanent resident of New Zealand who is outside New Zealand and has not been in New Zealand within the last 12 months.

    Which would mean that I'm eligible to vote for the first time since 1999 - except that last time I was in NZ I spent a week each in Hamilton and Wellington (based in Kapiti), so how I'd enroll having not lived in any electorate for one month, I don't know...

    Anyway, just thought it might be an important clarification for expats (or those of us who are neither diplomats, peacekeepers, or similar such exempted personal and their families).

    Wellington • Since Jan 2007 • 2401 posts Report Reply

  • David Hall,

    Another important point for the expats is that they can enrol to vote up until the day before the election and can enrol unless they have not visited NZ in the last three years.

    That of course applies to people in NZ but when overseas it is easy to just think one isn't elligible to vote - no nice people with clipboards canvasing for enrolments.

    The enrollment is very painless these days and can be an email of a scan of the voting papers (which can themselves be downloaded).

    Thought it worth noting since I was very depressed for a period thinking that I'd missed the boat with my overseas enrollment.

    Berlin • Since Oct 2011 • 2 posts Report Reply

  • Paul Campbell,

    I didn't vote for the 20 years I was away because I assumed that that "not been in New Zealand within the last 3 years" meant "had resided in NZ for 3 years" - which I think is fair - it's sort of the opposite of "no taxation without representation"

    To be fair under FPP, having lived in the most strongly-voting-National electorate in the country there had been little point in me ever casting a vote - (I could however have continued to cast a vote to make the bastard's pubs dry though - this was in essence an early vote vaguely in favour of MMP, or at least something fairer)

    Dunedin • Since Nov 2006 • 2606 posts Report Reply

  • Lucy Stewart, in reply to Chris Waugh,

    Which would mean that I'm eligible to vote for the first time since 1999 - except that last time I was in NZ I spent a week each in Hamilton and Wellington (based in Kapiti), so how I'd enroll having not lived in any electorate for one month, I don't know...

    I suppose you'd just still be at the last address you were in New Zealand, when you lived here?

    I really am impressed at how easy they make it to vote, when you're overseas. You can download your papers online (or have them posted to you), then post them to NZ, post them to your local consulate/embassy, vote at your consulate/embassy...there's really no excuse not to, if you're eligible.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 2105 posts Report Reply

  • Stephen Judd, in reply to Kumara Republic,

    TXT or social networking sites could fill the vacuum.

    You can start the process of updating your address via TXT. But the process still involves the post eventually.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 3122 posts Report Reply

  • Graeme Edgeler, in reply to Chris Waugh,

    Which would mean that I’m eligible to vote for the first time since 1999 – except that last time I was in NZ I spent a week each in Hamilton and Wellington (based in Kapiti), so how I’d enroll having not lived in any electorate for one month, I don’t know…

    Have you ever lived in one place for at least a month?

    If so, then then the electorate in which that address now is, is your electorate (you can have a different postal address).

    If you've been a complete itinerant for your entire time in New Zealand, there are still rules around where you should register, and you can register.

    Wellington, New Zealand • Since Nov 2006 • 3202 posts Report Reply

  • Graeme Edgeler, in reply to Stephen Judd,

    You can start the process of updating your address via TXT. But the process still involves the post eventually.

    Nope. It can also be done by fax. Or using a scanner and email.

    Wellington, New Zealand • Since Nov 2006 • 3202 posts Report Reply

  • Graeme Edgeler, in reply to Joe Wylie,

    Wall photos include the B52’s 1st album. 9th pic depicts sleeping seals & is mysteriously dedicated to Graeme Edgeler.

    The photos are of things with numbers on them, counting down the days until the election (I imagine the B52's photo was when there were 52 days to go). The dedication to me follows my actually counting the days until the election one time and suggesting there was a mistake :-)

    Wellington, New Zealand • Since Nov 2006 • 3202 posts Report Reply

  • Graeme Edgeler, in reply to Chris Waugh,

    According to Elections New Zealand:

    You cannot enrol if:
    • you are a New Zealand citizen who is outside New Zealand and has not been in New Zealand within the last 3 years or
    • you are a permanent resident of New Zealand who is outside New Zealand and has not been in New Zealand within the last 12 months.

    Indeed. I thought about going through the entire eligibility rules, but suggesting that people may be entitled to enrol when there’s some rule that precludes them, in particular, from voting doesn’t seem as bad as telling people who are entitled to vote that they are not entitled to. So I decided to focus on correcting that.

    You also can’t enrol if you’re on the corrupt practices list, and you can enrol despite not being in New Zealand if your time overseas without return is in the military or diplomatic service etc.

    And my reference to the Armed Forces Discipline Act was just a bit of fun and a dig at the rather sloppy legislating that was involved in disenfranchising short-term prisoners who happen to be inside on election day.

    Wellington, New Zealand • Since Nov 2006 • 3202 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Curtis, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    If you arent sending back the voter registration form then they are automatically un enrolled
    . I fail to see the logic in getting IRD letters ( to pay up ?) allows some sort of voter fraud.
    Ps make a habit of sending back letters , return to sender

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 314 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Curtis,

    The applying in advance for voting papers ( which are then sent to you by post) seems to be an Australian thing but they also have the standard early voting procedure.
    The DomPost and Wikipedia have the correct version, so where did the Listener get its information ?

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 314 posts Report Reply

  • Graeme Edgeler, in reply to Steve Curtis,

    If you arent sending back the voter registration form then they are automatically un enrolled

    I think that’s only if the enrolment letters to other people are sent back.

    Wellington, New Zealand • Since Nov 2006 • 3202 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel,

    Stuff ups...

    I don’t doubt that these were good faith errors, but particularly for something as important as the right to vote, I think we’ve all got an obligation to make sure people aren’t misinformed. I don’t want to be overly negative, but please get stuff like this right, and please check if you’re not sure: there was a lot of good in the article, and I don’t want it undone.

    Fairfax just don't seem to care about accuracy on their website, just this weekend Mike Alexander's 'On the beat; NZ Music Wrap' had a 'Valerie Fasavula,' the winner of Dawn Raid's Generation Next competition as a "...16-year-old Mangarei College student". Not Valerie Fa'asavalu from Mangere College then?
    Then he reported that some band called 'Beatswars' had a pale ale brewed in their honour by some boutique brewer called "Halatau", must be in a League of their own! - and the other week after 30 years he was still writing about a band called 'Straightjacket Fits'.
    Lazy muppets...

    Still I do realise November 26th is important
    - The Clean are playing in Chchch!
    (I'll go after voting, promise)
    :- )

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7887 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Graeme Edgeler,

    corrupt practices list

    Oooh, how does one get onto that?

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19683 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Ian Dalziel,

    Lazy muppets...

    and subeditors based somewhere else who don't know local cultures

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19683 posts Report Reply

  • Joe Wylie, in reply to Graeme Edgeler,

    The photos are of things with numbers on them, counting down the days until the election . . .

    Spooky! While Orange Guy may aspire to a kind of reassuring neutrality, he appears to have far too many personal quirks to rival the real zeitgeist.

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 4591 posts Report Reply

  • Graeme Edgeler, in reply to Sacha,

    corrupt practices list

    Oooh, how does one get onto that?

    By being convicted of a corrupt practice in relation to an election, or being found to have engaged in a corrupt practice in an election petition. Even if you don't go to prison, you go on the corrupt practices list and can't enrol or stand for the next three years.

    Wellington, New Zealand • Since Nov 2006 • 3202 posts Report Reply

  • Paul Campbell,

    My wife is a US citizen she was originally enrolled for city/school board/water board/county/state/federal elections, as she's spent more time overseas her local residency seems to have come progressively unstuck, she no longer gets to vote on local state issues, just on federal ones (president, senator etc) - I think this does make sense, she's not really connected at that local level any more

    I wonder if we should do something similar - been living overseas more than X years, you lose you electoral vote but keep the party one (just a suggestion - still trying to figure out if it's a good idea)

    Dunedin • Since Nov 2006 • 2606 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Graeme Edgeler,

    That's much less exciting than I'd hoped. :)

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19683 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Barnes, in reply to Graeme Edgeler,

    The photos are of things with numbers on them,

    Bit O/T but...
    Has anyone else noticed the Keno thing on TV?
    It used to be things with numbers on them, now it's random things with random numbers...
    23 telephone poles.
    18 rabbits
    12 car accidents
    13 toothbrushes

    WTF?

    Back on topic.
    We are sent letters by The Registrar of Electors saying...
    "If it's for you, great, you're enrolled to vote
    if it's not send it back"
    If it's not you and you don't send it back, does that mean you can steal tat vote? if you get to the booth before the real voter that is.

    Peria • Since Dec 2006 • 5521 posts Report Reply

  • Graeme Edgeler, in reply to Steve Barnes,

    If it’s not you and you don’t send it back, does that mean you can steal tat vote? if you get to the booth before the real voter that is.

    You don't need an easyvote card or any ID to vote, so you can corruptly do this anyway :-)

    Also, it's not really about getting there first, it's about going to a clerk with a different copy of the electoral roll (at the same booth or somewhere else). Actually voting for someone else is pretty easy in New Zealand, but instances of dual voting are followed up very closely, so while you might get to cast a vote it won't count,* and you could well be caught.

    * dual voted referendum votes will count, because the Government decided to cut corners and not have many of the protections in place for the election in place for the referendum as well. I, along with others, raised this concern in my submission on the Electoral Referendum Bill.

    Wellington, New Zealand • Since Nov 2006 • 3202 posts Report Reply

  • Chris Waugh, in reply to Paul Campbell,

    I wonder if we should do something similar – been living overseas more than X years, you lose you electoral vote but keep the party one (just a suggestion – still trying to figure out if it’s a good idea)

    So long as we've got MMP, I think that should be the rule. I am similarly unstuck from any local electorate in NZ, and so don't see how I could, or why I should be allowed to, cast a vote on any local issue, be it electorate MP or city councillor. But as a NZ citizen I do have a stake in the outcome of national elections and therefore would like the luxury of deciding which is the least bad party and casting a vote accordingly.

    And to Lucy and Graeme's questions: It has been a long time since I had any place of residence in NZ, and I no longer have any ties of any kind to any such place.

    Wellington • Since Jan 2007 • 2401 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Chris Waugh,

    So long as we've got MMP, I think that should be the rule.

    +1

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19683 posts Report Reply

  • Rich of Observationz, in reply to Chris Waugh,

    Incidentally, are the Greens running London-based list candidates this year as they have done previously?

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5550 posts Report Reply

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