In case you missed it, and there’s no way you haven’t, it’s voting day. People, 18 years-old and older, will be heading to the polling places to endure the political volunteers shoving paper in their face, standing in the queue to vote, standing in another for a sausage, and then maybe one more line for some baked goodies.
Early polling figures show that more than 2.5 million Australians will be doing something else today as they voted early. If you compare that number to the 1.9 million last election than it seems that more people are getting into the early polling centres as to not ruin their trip or weekend.
Australian Electoral Commission divisional returning officer Ann Beinke has never seen the pre-polling booths so full in the three elections that she has been a part of. Beinke told the ABC “It is school holidays, so people want to get it over and done with before they go away,” concluding with saying “People like to vote when they want to rather than be stuck on a Saturday.”
Some lucky people have even voted early so they can pack up and head for warmer weather. The grey nomads across the country are heading for the north and in doing so are getting into the polling booths early. Beinke said “It seems to be becoming more and more common, that that’s the lifestyle people want to have … follow the sun maybe.”
While many have done their civic duty early, there are many that will be lining up now to see which party is going to lead our government for the next three years. One early voter, who drove his caravan to North Queensland to escape the chill of Victoria told ABC “Unfortunately our pollies at the moment, who can you believe? Each one of them is contradicting one another and each one keeps blaming one another so I get a bit disillusioned with the leaders.” He concluded with “We come up here every year to get away”.
Did you get into early voting? Are you standing in line to vote today? Is the important question rather sausage sizzle or baked goods?