There’s a lot of absolute garbage being talked about preferences at the moment, but I’d just like to make some points:
- Every party issues preferences in the Senate and HTVs in the lower house. Failure to do this guarantees that you will lose votes, with – for example – people who are not aware of the intricacies of the system just marking “1” and having their votes discarded as informal.
- The Greens preferencing Labor over the Liberals no more makes them a puppet of the ALP than, say, the Liberals are a puppet of Family First for preferencing them above Labor.
- It’s a damn shame voters can’t preference above the line in the Senate: if you don’t want to trust to a party’s ticket, you have to number 90% of the boxes below the line – usually more than 70. The Greens have proposed allowing voters to preference above the line, but both old parties have voted against it. The Greens have promised to try again – the more votes they get, the better their chance of succeeding in this.
- It is not inconsistent for a party to issue preferences for those who wish to just rely on them, whilst telling their voters they’d much prefer they made up their own minds.
Which ridiculous misunderstandings of the preference system – and cynical capitalisation on same – have you seen this week?