Legal Beagle by Graeme Edgeler

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Legal Beagle: Voting in the Flag Referendum

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  • Graeme Edgeler,

    Feel free to ask other questions!

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

  • izogi,

    Well, we received four sets of ballot papers in the mailbox today: One for me, one for my wife, and two for the couple who shifted out of this house more than a year ago and have never bothered to update their address for anyone who sends them mail. We’ve gotten to the stage that we forward their mail when we can be bothered.

    Yay for postal ballots.

    Wellington • Since Jan 2007 • 1139 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel, in reply to izogi,

    Well, we received four sets of ballot papers in the mailbox today: One for me, one for my wife, and two for the couple who shifted out of this house more than a year ago and have never bothered to update their address for anyone who sends them mail

    Imagine what it will be like in Chchch...
    It is still ripe for enabled Postal voting fraud on a huge scale I reckon.
    (well some anyway, this issue is clouding people's judgement)

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7887 posts Report Reply

  • Rosemary McDonald,

    There are cynical bastards in our household who reckon the outcome is pre-determined.

    Those Who Rule Us probably have the new flag at the mass manufacturing stage already.

    This exercise is pantomime.

    Waikato, or on the road • Since Apr 2014 • 1344 posts Report Reply

  • Andrew Geddis,

    If you don’t rank any flag at all with a “1”. Or if you rank more than one flag with a “1”. Or if you vote using ticks, like in a first past the post election.

    If you put a single tick next to just one of the options and nothing else, then that will be counted as if you marked the ballot paper with a 1 (as the voter's intention is clear).

    But if you put ticks next to more than one of the options, then your vote will be treated as invalid.

    Dunedin • Since Nov 2007 • 200 posts Report Reply

  • Alex Stone,

    Thanks for this explanation Graeme - could you please extend this with an appraisal of what a spoiled paper will do; and/or how best to register dissatisfaction the the process itself?

    Since Nov 2015 • 2 posts Report Reply

  • Graeme Edgeler, in reply to Alex Stone,

    could you please extend this with an appraisal of what a spoiled paper will do; and/or how best to register dissatisfaction the the process itself?

    A spoiled paper will be counted as an informal vote. The number of informal votes will be recorded, but not the reasons for that (the only person seeing your beautifully drawn Matariki flag is the drone recording your vote on a computer).

    The best way to register your dissatisfaction with the process is to tell people. There is pretty much nothing you can do as part of the voting process that would be recognised as a protest.

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

  • Marion Ogier, in reply to Graeme Edgeler,

    Really? What if the informals outnumbered the first choice? Or if you don't bother to vote at all - could a low, low turnout be construed as a protest. I really hate this whole process and how we have arrived at this point.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2010 • 20 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel, in reply to Marion Ogier,

    Dante's fernery...

    I really hate this whole process and how we have arrived at this point.

    I think the Key Party line advice is 'lie back, but don't think of England'

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7887 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart, in reply to Marion Ogier,

    Really? What if the informals outnumbered the first choice? Or if you don’t bother to vote at all – could a low, low turnout be construed as a protest. I really hate this whole process and how we have arrived at this point.

    Really. Really really. A vote is not a protest. If you want to protest, actually protest. If you have at any point objected to the cost of the referenda, I'd suggest binning your ballot paper. It's the cheapest thing to do, and will be reflected in the % turnout.

    I was mildly annoyed to see Annette King (I think) on the news the other night advocating that if you wanted to keep our existing flag, you should vote 1 (or 0) across all the flags in this referendum. That's spoiling your vote. Again, you may as well not vote.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4650 posts Report Reply

  • izogi, in reply to Emma Hart,

    I was mildly annoyed to see Annette King (I think) on the news the other night advocating that if you wanted to keep our existing flag, you should vote 1 (or 0) across all the flags in this referendum.

    It's probably not without tactical consideration, though. If she'd not previously told people to spoil their ballot papers, it'd be harder to later say "See! All those people agree with the exact reasoning I expressed for spoiling their ballot papers!"

    Wellington • Since Jan 2007 • 1139 posts Report Reply

  • Jackson James Wood, in reply to Andrew Geddis,

    What if I put Roman numerals or Khmer (១, ២, ៣, ៤, ៥)?

    New Zealand • Since May 2011 • 20 posts Report Reply

  • Graeme Edgeler, in reply to Jackson James Wood,

    What if I put Roman numerals or Khmer (១, ២, ៣, ៤, ៥)?

    I think the usual response is: working people are processing these things, so don't be a dick.

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

  • Soon Lee,

    The Electoral Commission website has a worked example of Preferential Voting.

    Auckland • Since Apr 2013 • 141 posts Report Reply

  • Andrew Geddis, in reply to Jackson James Wood,

    Wot Graeme said.

    Dunedin • Since Nov 2007 • 200 posts Report Reply

  • weka,

    Not voting can be interpreted in many ways, the least of which is a protest vote. NZ typically has a low turnout for referenda, so not voting is more likely to be seen as couldn't be bothered/don't care.

    Spoling the vote is more likley to be seen as a protest. At the last referendum the spoiled vote was .3% If the flag1 referendum got 20% spoiled votes it would be hard to interpret that as anything other than protest/FJK.

    Since Dec 2014 • 17 posts Report Reply

  • George Darroch, in reply to Rosemary McDonald,

    Those Who Rule Us probably have the new flag at the mass manufacturing stage already.

    This exercise is pantomime.

    I’ve been surprised at the level of antagonism towards this process. It’s not rational; as if this exercise is a disruption of Our Zealand. That the stasis we’re in is comfortable and even optimal.

    I’m not voting, because I want a new flag. I believe that we’re better off with a narrative of this process as a trainwreck, so that the next attempt in 2030 is defined as something completely new, rather than a continuation of a failed attempt.

    Edit: And because if I vote, my vote will be seen as an endorsement of Kyle bloody Lockwood's Weetbix #1.

    WLG • Since Nov 2006 • 2264 posts Report Reply

  • chris, in reply to weka,

    couldn’t be bothered/don’t care

    In the context of this first referendum:

    Prime Minister John Key has made his big pitch for why he thinks the country needs a new flag.

    it’s a rejection of this need.

    Mawkland • Since Jan 2010 • 1302 posts Report Reply

  • simon g,

    If they want us to vote, they should put some decent food on the menu. Like pizzas and stuff.

    Nobody's going to vote for broccoli.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1321 posts Report Reply

  • Robyn Gallagher, in reply to Rosemary McDonald,

    There are cynical bastards in our household who reckon the outcome is pre-determined.

    It would be extremely difficult to actually do this, given that throughout the whole referendum process there are actual real people involved.

    Unless the theory extends to some sort of 9/11-scale conspiracy where hundreds of people are paid off to keep silent for life. Tbh, I don't think the New Zealand government could manage an operation like that without at least something getting messed up.

    Raglan • Since Nov 2006 • 1946 posts Report Reply

  • Rich of Observationz,

    If I put a Weetabix in the envelope and send it back then, as well as feeding the hard working voters, is this a valid vote for the Weetabix flag, or would it be spoiled, even if the cereal isn't.

    * Weetabix is a good choice for a new flag, as although people think it's Kiwi, it's actually a UK product made under license.

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

  • Ian Dalziel, in reply to Rich of Observationz,

    cereal shorthand...

    Weetabix is a good choice for a new flag

    Que? Weetabix packaging is all yellow and light blue...
    Weet-bix surely - the seventh day adventists and all that..
    any way with all those fronds who needs extra fibre?

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7887 posts Report Reply

  • Joe Wylie, in reply to Ian Dalziel,

    Que? Weetabix packaging is all yellow and light blue...
    Weet-bix surely - the seventh day adventists and all that..

    Seven-day adventurers, as the mum of one of my childhood friends called them. Being deaf and functionally illiterate, she had some interesting takes on a number of things.

    Weet-Bix predates Weetabix. Invented in Australia in the 1920s, it spread to NZ and South Africa before spawning its UK offspring.

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 4591 posts Report Reply

  • Rosemary McDonald,

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11544460

    You guys read this, right?

    and this....http://insights.nzherald.co.nz/article/the-flag-debate

    I don't know how They will do it....but do it They will.

    National/Key keep topping the polls, despite pretty much everyone apart from Henry/Hosking wishing them gone.

    This is not rational!

    I'm off to polish my hat...

    Waikato, or on the road • Since Apr 2014 • 1344 posts Report Reply

  • Rob Stowell,

    Graeme – what’s the law regarding advertising? Once a fern is up against the current flag, might we see a torrent of emotional tv spots and fullpage spreads probably featuring all blacks and airforce heros urging us to get frondly with a brave step into a new world?

    Whakaraupo • Since Nov 2006 • 2090 posts Report Reply

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