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The 31 bossy How-to-vote Cards lodged for

South Australia’s 2010 Legislative Council elections



See the array of 31 bossy How-to-vote cards for South Australia’s Legislative Council polls. Zoom in for the detail.



SA’s electoral law is tailored so that SA’s use of quota-preferential proportional representation is dominated by the will of the party organizations, as voters are steered into marking a single box above-the-line, because their only alternative if they want to rank the candidates individually is to mark every preference below-the-line, without a single mistake.



There were 74 candidates, and a ballot is only valid if at least 73 boxes are uniquely numbered, each with a different integer between 1 and 73.



4 of the 35 “Groups” of candidates did not lodge a How-to-vote card.



11 of the 35 “Groups” of candidates consisted of only one candidate.



28 of the Groups’ How-to-vote cards effectively instructed voters NOT TO VOTE BELOW THE LINE, which amounts to a demand that voters forego their right to show preferences for other groups and candidates in the order they prefer, and instead slavishly submit to the party machine’s imperious and self-serving command to vote as told.


A similar message was softened in the more polite – and possibly more effective – statements instead by the three more sophisticated operators, who were the only party groups with candidates likely to be elected:

Liberals – ‘No need to complete the “below the line” section’,

Labor – ‘You do not have to fill out any boxes below the red line’.

Greens – ‘You do not have to fill out boxes below the red line’.



The Liberals, with 7 candidates, were the only Group to have more than 5 candidates for the 11 seats to be filled.



Contrast SA’s almost party list mentality with Tasmania’s Hare-Clark, which gives voters real power.




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