Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Tories Lack Of Planning Wins Election

There was no enumeration done between the 2004 an 2008 election despite thousands of new people coming to the province to gain from the current boom. Instant Albertans, you only have to live here for six months to be eligible to be called an Albertan and vote, became eligible to vote during that time. But did the Tired Old Tories do a new enumeration. Nope. So massive amounts of voters found themselves having to fill out forms at polling stations identifying where they live. On line attempts to register also failed.

I scrutineered the advance poll in Edmonton Strathcona and again election night and watched as frustrate voters were directed to identify themselves with a picture id and a power bill showing where they lived. In many cases these folks had voted in the last provincial and federal and municipal elections and had not moved!!! Polling stations overlapped so voters came to a poll they thought they voted at only to be told to go somewhere else.

The Tories had no plan for this election. Which is like the rest of their policies, make em up on the fly. So the result was that they only got elected because the majority of Albertans did not vote.

The Tories got elected through voter enui, which they count on. Unfortunately the old anarchist adage, Don't Vote It Only Encourages Them, applies here but not as one would think.

Another, rather perverse, possibility is that some non-voters realize the political class is a lot more likely to worry about them if they don't vote -- by writing earnest opinion articles about the dangers of a disengaged electorate, for example -- than if they validate the process by marking ballots.

The Tories count on Albertans not voting in order to get elected. I know it appears counter intuitive but they really don't want Albertans to vote it ensures their re-election. They all but admit that. They reminded us of that Monday night when Ed told the press that Albertans "only vote to turf out a government". As they did in the landslide election of 1935 and again in 1971.

Alberta's "shameful" voter turnout for its provincial election sparked anger and disappointment Tuesday, with analysts trying to figure out the root of the apathy and Liberals calling for a probe of voting problems.

Only 41.3 per cent of eligible Albertans cast ballots Monday -- a record low for the province and the worst turnout to elect any current sitting government in the country.

Some Albertans blamed voting problems -- like being directed to the wrong voting station -- for not being able to cast their ballots.

Turnout has been sliding in Alberta since 1993, and this time the number came in below the previous worst – 44.7 per cent in 2004.

Let's conclude -- and underline the truly dreadful nature of Monday's turnout -- by stating party results in terms of all potential voters.

Doing that, we see that of 2,252,104 folks on the voters list, about 22.2 per cent voted Tory, 11.1 per cent voted Liberal, 3.6 per cent voted NDP, 2.6 per cent voted Wildrose Alliance, and two per cent voted Green.

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