Thursday, May 09, 2013

Ya, But....Can Ms. Clark See Point Grey From Her House?


You may have seen the TeeVee footage of Christy Clark casting her ballot for first herself and then, second, Margaret MacDiarmid.

And now we have an explanation for why Ms. Clark tried to first vote for herself in Point Grey despite the fact that she actually lives in Fairview where Ms. MacDiarmid is running for the BC Liberal Party.

The Globe's Justine Hunter had the (slightly misspelled) story on the Twittmachine earlier this afternoon:

Which is all fine as far as it goes.

Because, after all, if you campaign as a serial liar and your approval ratings subsequently go up, presumably because the proMedia is unwilling to hold you to account for your words, deeds, and actions, why should you (or your Wizards) worry about a little (more) incompetence.


What's with this thing about bringing cameras into the voting station and having them film you cast your ballot while you tell everyone in the room, including folks there to vote, as well as the entire province who, precisely, you are voting for?

Is that even legal?

Well, if you look at the election act the answer would appear to be....


Voting to be by secret ballot
90  (1) Voting at an election must be by secret ballot.
(2) Each individual present at a place at which a voter exercises the right to vote, including individuals present to vote, and each individual present at the counting of the vote must preserve the secrecy of the ballot and, in particular, must not do any of the following:
(a) interfere with an individual who is marking a ballot;
(b) attempt to discover how an individual voted;
(c) communicate information regarding how another individual voted or marked a ballot;
(d) induce an individual, directly or indirectly, to show the ballot in a way that reveals how the individual voted.
(3) A voter may not be required in any legal proceedings to reveal how he or she voted in an election....

{snippety doo-dah}

261  (1) An individual or organization who does any of the following commits an offence:
(a) contravenes section 90 (2) regarding the secrecy of the ballot;
(b) is present at a place where voting or counting proceedings are being conducted without being authorized under this Act to be present;
(c) contravenes section 74 regarding granting employees time free from work during general voting;
(d) without authority takes down, covers up, mutilates, defaces or alters a notice or other document authorized or required under this Act to be posted.
(2) An individual or organization who commits an offence under subsection (1) is liable to a fine of not more than $10 000 or imprisonment for a term not longer than one year, or both.


Isn't that interesting.

Then again, it's not like Ms. Clark hasn't been given a free ride by Elections BC for bringing the cameras to the polling station before.




chuckstraight said...

Excellent point- I wondered as well when I saw the story.
It used to be called secret ballot.
How can elections BC be forced to charge Ms Clark(e)?

chuckstraight said...

Further to this- CTV essentially showed Clark(e)`s ballot on the news, and no mention of breaking the law. BCTV indicates a new poll tomorrow, and Liberals expected to be higher. WTF?

North Van's Grumps said...

Elections BC didn't exactly jump and down when Minister/MLA Ida Chong and Minister/MLA Don McRae rolled the MSM cameras into the their respective Offices in Victoria and showed the world how to ... open... read.... follow the instructions.... mark.... close... seal.. put into the next envelop and seal.... their HST ballot.

They even went so far as to show the World how they voted in a Secret Ballot.

North Van's Grumps said...

RossK, one of your links is broken ...

"Offences in relation to voting and counting proceedings"

It should be this:
As to all those camera people inside the Voting location....there's an out, for certain people...

Can I take someone into the voting booth to help me?

Yes. If you need assistance an election official may assist you to vote. If you are caring for someone (e.g. a child or elderly relative) at the time you cast your ballot, the presiding election official may allow you to have that person (Ben Chin) in the booth with you.

Anyone providing assistance to another elector is required to sign a solemn declaration before providing any assistance. Speak to the presiding election official at the voting place for further information.

Anonymous said...

See, I wanted to take a camera and get a shot of myself voting, just holding the ballot above the box like politicians do.

Except, the sign on the Elections BC office door was very clear: NO CAMERAS.

And so I wonder...=/

Anonymous said...

When Clark wrote her name on the ballot, that ballot should have been confiscated and placed in the spoiled ballot envelope, while Ms. Clark should have been given a new ballot. The DRO was not doing his/her duty as required.

RossK said...


Point taken, but...

Perhaps the DRO was bamboozled by a voter who was telling them, and showing them, what she was writing on her ballot, not to mention the bamboozlement factor of having TeeVee cameras inside the voting station pointing their lenses in the DRO's face.

Upshot - Neither the act of voting nor the secret ballot is a photo-op.


scotty on Denman said...

My partner volunteered for vote counting in a recent election. She told me Christy's ballot would be counted as spoiled.

I disagree with Anon above. Spoiled ballots are not given another chance to vote. If they were, a re-count could not discern who won if the decision turned on any number less than the number of spoiled ballots.

Thanks, Ross.