Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Perhaps we should have tried this

Daily e-mail brief from Foreign Policy informs me that:
Egypt's election commission extended voting into a third day as low voter turnout is preventing former General Abdullah Fattah al-Sisi, who is forecast to win the presidency, from attaining the broad mandate and legitimacy he is seeking. The commission said the extension was in response to a "large" number of citizens who weren't able to make it to polling stations due to a heat wave in Egypt. However, turnout remained low on Wednesday, suggesting a lower level of support for Sisi. The Democracy International observer mission said the extension raised questions about the credibility of the electoral process.
Of course, nobody, not even the Met Office, can pretend that we have been having a heat wave in the past week but it does seem that a large number of our citizens were unable to make it to polling stations for whatever reason.

Turn-out in the UK was 36 per cent for the local elections and 33.7 per cent for the European. To be fair, it appears to be even lower in Egypt:
Election officials also said they would enforce a fine of over 500 Egyptian pounds (£42; $72) for non-voting.

Egypt's election commission said the extra day of voting was to "allow citizens who could not cast their ballots because of residence restrictions" to participate in the elections.

An election official added that part of the reason for the low turnout was the unusually hot weather on Tuesday.

Observers from Mr Sabahi's campaign estimated that turnout on Monday was 10-15% and even less on Tuesday.
What, one wonders, will be Wednesday's turn-out like and should we not think about making election day a holiday. Oh wait. That means even fewer people will bother to vote.

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