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May 28, 2008

some voters are more important than others

Nobody can take any reasonable guess what is going to happen with the government. The MKs and ministers have shown no backbone and prefer to sit with unprecedented levels of corruption in government, and have so far refused to stand up to Olmert. So, as of right now, anything can happen.

One thing that is a concern with the possibility of upcoming elections, is the conflict between national and municipal elections. Municipal elections are scheduled, in many cities, for this coming November.

If general elections should be called soon, it would likely fall out around the same time. The Knesset has discussed this possibility and has suggested various options in how to deal with it. One option was to delay municipal elections by another year.

The Interior Minister and other senior officials in Kadima have suggested holding both sets of elections on the same day, if there would be a need for general elections.

This would seemingly be a benefit to democracy, as municipal elections generally get a much higher turnout than general elections. So if someone is going anyway to vote for his mayor and city council, perhaps the general election balloting would also receive the benefit of people who normally would not participate, participating.

It seems the Haredi political parties are very concerned about the above suggestion. It turns out that after the previous few elections, when the Haredi parties showed their growth and explained how they are getting more and more support, their own natural voter base is growing and they are gaining supporters among the general public - that was all deception and manipulation.

Mishpacha newspaper this past week had a little article on the topic.

It seems that in reality, the reason why the Haredi parties have grown in the past few elections is because the turnout in the general public has been decreasing, but the Haredi public turns out to vote en masse.

So they have not really grown, but they have acquired influence beyond their real numbers simply due to the apathy of the general public.

They are concerned that in such a situation, there would be a much higher turnout of the general public and that would decrease the level of Haredi influence back to being more proportional with their numbers.

The Haredi parties are concerned about this and have held meetings with various ministers and other parties to try to derail the above recommendation.

All this was written in the Mishpacha newspaper.

So it seems it is better to ensure that as many people as possible do not participate in the process, so that some can have more power.

2 comments:

  1. I think we need 2 separate election days - not for deep ideological/ political reasons, but i do love a public holiday!! Closest we get to a Sunday round here.

    (Unlike the UK, where somehow we all managed to get to the polls and still do a day's work!)

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  2. I agree. I wish we could have governments fall and have elections every three months, just for the holiday. But municipal elections do not give you a day off. only national elections do.

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