Elections A Fizzer?


Will this year’s local body elections drown in apathy?

Despite this being the much-promoted first Auckland supercouncil election, only 11% of Auckland’s votes had been in by the end of the first voting week- not much better than the 9.4% at the same stage of the voting period during the last election in 2007.

Apparently it is up to 18% now which is better.

But a check beyond Auckland doesn’t augur well.

In Wellington, after this morning’s mail was emptied, only a total of 14,395 election papers had been returned. This is 10.6%.

There’s  just 11 days left to fill in voting papers and post them back and  a council spokesman points out this is now school holidays - and many families may be busy or have left town.

The interest in voting is going down.

In the last local body elections just 40% of eligible voters returned their papers in Wellington City. This was down from 42% in the 2004 elections, and 49% in 2001,




  1. Chris R says:

    I have a feeling that postal voting allows an increase in voter apathy and that, in the interests of democracy, we should go back to voting at polling places on election day.

  2. karl says:

    I prefer poll booth voting, but not sure that it’s any magic bullet - it just feels better. More “right” somehow.

  3. Joshua says:

    Plus this year there isn’t really any candidates worth voting for, I think I’m going to vote, but haven’t yet decided, problem is I don’t like anyone who is in the running. Might come down to knocking off who I dislike the most, or just voting for some random down the list. Even not voting at all is an option at this stage.

  4. Nick R says:

    Can people cast a vote of no confidence?

  5. Matt says:

    Was a little disturbed that the ballot papers are arranged alphabetically. At least Banks won’t get the “Fuckit, I’ll tick the first box” vote, but that’s a small mercy.

  6. Frank says:

    It figures. The more central government guts local government, the less local government actually matters, so fewer people vote.

    Postal ballot is a factor too. Have they heard of a thing called the internet? Would help get the young people voting

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  8. rtc says:

    Being the mayor of 1/3rd of NZ’s population is going to make them pretty difficult to ignore however, so it’s still a pretty important need to have that person championing PT rather than motorways as Banks will be doing.

  9. karl says:

    “Might come down to knocking off who I dislike the most,”

    That’s always a fair way of voting. Not voting, in my opinion, means you have no right to complain about anything later.

    I’m not disappointed in the canidate selection at all. There’s some clear choices available - and only fanatic followers will always be happy with their choice. Politics is the art of compromises without compromising yourself, so every politician ends up with a raft of decisions sooner or later that even their followers aren’t happy about.

  10. Andy says:

    Had a dream last night the neither Brown or Banks won and it was some other random guy who won it. I think I’ve been looking at this blog too often. :D


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