Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Robertson 1, Franks 0



I can confidently say that in the only poll that matters, the General Election, Grant Robertson is comfortably ahead of Stephen Franks.

This morning I cast a special vote for Grant and Labour in Sydney. I was the first customer at the temporary polling booth - perhaps I'm the first voter for the Wellington Central electorate, perhaps the first voter in the NZ General Election ...?

A cluster of unions had collected eligible members but it was wet so a number of the construction guys were stuck at work-sites (had it been dry, they'd have been able to turn up during their official "smoko", but as it was wet, if they left they'd miss out on four hours pay - there's an irony in that I'm sure). In fact, as I wandered back to the office, I could easily have been back in Wellington it was that cold.

Media showed up - TVNZ, TV3, ABC, SBS and Reuters. They got some good images of the haka. It was faithfully and respectfully performed following karakia. I stood in the back. I was asked to get in the front and should have but self-conciousness got the better of me.

Fourteen years ago, Grant and I stood against each other for the presidency of NZUSA. He didn't get my vote, I think he understood why. I'm happy to have been, possibly, the first person who voted for him this time.

8 comments:

llew said...

Wow - and Labour are winning by 1 too.

I think they should tell you if you were the first.

backin15 said...

Indeed. Or alternatively, it should be first vote wins.

Anonymous said...

Congratulations on doing your civic duty. I hope the rest of the Kiwis across the ditch follow your lead.

On a semi-related note, why do we let foreign citizens vote in our elections here? It's not like they let us vote in theirs.....

The ex-expat said...

Although I understand why you went, you know you could have just downloaded your paper and faxed it off?

backin15 said...

anon,

You've got a point. But there's other country's that allow offshore residents to vote - Italy does for certain. A suburb near where I live, leichhardt, is heavily canvassed everytime the Italian go to the polls - yes everytime.

ex-expat, I don't think so, you have to vote at a polling booth. You can enrol by downloading faxing/emailing forms but voting has to be done at a polling booth in Australia (perhaps they have other arrangements in countries with fewer NZ voters?)

Anonymous said...

Just to clarify: I have no problem with offshore citizens being able to vote in NZ elections. I am bothered immensely by the fact that foreign citizens resident in New Zealand are able to vote in our elections.

Heine said...

There are so many non Labour voters in Aussie right now driven over there by the policies of the last 9 years that your vote would have been cancelled out a thousand times over :)

The ex-expat said...

Apparently location doesn't make any difference, you can download your papers and fax/post them off. More information here