Re: Determination Notice to an elector who has failed to vote

Michael Harris

xx-xx-2006 xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx




Dear xxxxxx,

Re: Determination Notice to an elector who has failed to vote

This letter is regarding my failure to vote at the last state election. I accept that my given reason ("philosophical object to voting") was short and needed more explanation. This letter is to provide more information and explain more clearly my position and why I believe that I have a valid and sufficient reason for not voting.

I have an objection to voting for governmental positions. My reasons are mainly philosophical, but are tinged by practically as well.

I believe that voting in this current system implies an endorsement for the current system of government under which we live. I disagree with this current system and do not believe that change to a more preferable system is possible using the methods of the current system.

I also believe that as no candidates stand for elections that represent my views nor advocate changing the system to a more preferable (for me) one that giving my vote to one of the candidates implies an endorsement for that candidates position, for which I do not agree. As such I do not feel able to be represented.

I feel that these reasons given are valid and sufficient without further explanation, however, I wish to outline some other reasons for feeling that my philosophical objection is both valid and sufficient.

I first look at conscripts who refused to fight in wars because of pacifist or other beliefs. From 1964 to 1972 Australians were conscripted for military service, many conscripts were sent to fight in the Vietnam War. However, a number of these conscripts refused to serve.

These citizens had a conscientious objection to fighting, sometimes it was a religious belief, often it was a simple philosophical belief that war was abhorrent and that it should not be conducted.

I think that my conscientious objection to voting parallels to some extent this conscientious objection to war. I have a conscientious objection to supporting the current system of government

One further reason relates to the Act. Under section 181 there are three valid and sufficient reasons for not voting. I draw your attention to two. These are "if an elector", "was incapable of voting at the election" or "believes it to be part of his or her religious duty to abstain from voting".

I believe that my philosophical objections prevented me from voting in good faith at the election. If I had voted I would have gone against my principles, as such I was incapable of voting .

Religion and philosophy both shape how a person lives their life. They are similar in that both provide a set of guidelines and rules on how to live. Both philosophy and religion play such an important role in a persons life. As I mentioned above my philosophy prevents me from voting in governmental elections.

For all these reasons I believe that I have a valid and sufficient reason for not voting in the election.

Yours sincerely,

Michael Harris

As it happens, I never heard anything again regarding this issue. During the 2010 Tasmanian state election I was not living in the state. Another notice was forwarded to me, and I responded with two comments. The first refering them to this letter, and the second that I was not living in the state. Nothing further has arrived in my mail as of this writing.

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