Voter engagement (III) - Macleans.ca
 

Voter engagement (III)


 

While clarifying the parameters around special ballot voting, Elections Canada has ruled that the votes cast in Guelph will be counted.

While the initiative at the University of Guelph was not pre-authorized by the Chief Electoral Officer, the Canada Elections Act provides that electors may apply for and vote by special ballot. A special ballot coordinator, appointed by the local returning officer, oversaw the activities at the University of Guelph. All information at our disposal indicates that the votes were cast in a manner that respects the Canada Elections Act and are valid.

Whatever the allegations of attempt ballot box interference, the Conservative campaign says it’s happy the students will not be disenfranchised.


 

Voter engagement (III)

  1. When will Canada get its own government system rather than an antiquated left over of England? When will Canadians have the freedom to ACTUALY vote for their leader? When will Canadians find their spine? Canada has been slowly perversely gutted from the inside out. Home of the free my @ss.

  2. When will Canada get its own government system rather than an antiquated left over of England? When will Canadians have the freedom to ACTUALY vote for their leader? When will Canadians find their spine? Canada has been slowly perversely gutted from the inside out. Home of the free my @ss.

    • LAND of the free, you @ss. And the home of the brave. When are you going to bother learning the words to the national anthem? Are you even Canadian?

      • If you call that "the national anthem", then your own status as a Canadian is in question, Craigola.

        You might both try learning the Canadian anthem (hint: it's not the Hockey Night in Canada theme).

        • I regret that I was a smidge too subtle.

        • Love baiting the foolish – what does Canada or Canadians know of freedom with the likes of Harper – A parliament system that is a curse from old empire – we cannot even vote for our leader –- Canada is as free as a bird in a cage – (and it's your privilege to pay high taxes for your own slavery) –…strong and free do you prefer? (But that's a lie or fantasy if you prefer – easy not to face the facts) – You just demonstrated “form before function” how clever – the Canadian way – eh

          • Shorter GIGO: blah blah blah.

          • You want a president, move south. I don't.

          • You want a President? Drive south; see if they'll have you.

            The system we have could do with some revamping, but emulate the US? Puhleese!

    • Just now I pictured you with the blue paint on your face riding your horse up and down the line as you rallied the troops. Sadly, I also noticed your belly was protruding out (in a not-very-nice way) over the waistband of your kilt and that your mum was calling you from the sidewalk "Fer chrissakes Jock, git yerrrr backside back home nouw and finish da vacuumin'. The vicar's coming over fer dinner tonight"

      • I'm sorry, did I say your mum? I meant your wife.

        God love her.

        • The poor longsufferin' woman.

    • You mean, you want a system that emulates the United States?

      Because that seems to work so terribly well for them.

  3. Special Ballots: Issue Solved.

    Now, let's get back to Mr. Grabbybox, shall we?

  4. Special Ballots: Issue Solved.

    Now, let's get back to Mr. Grabbybox, shall we?

    • That was a false accusation, obviously.

      But the "special ballot coordinator" was outright fraud. I hope and expect this to be tossed out and charges to be laid. The Deputy Returning Officer should be replaced. Scrutineers protect our democracy but their presence was denied. That alone should cause this to be tossed. handing out election materials even near a polling station is illegal. At Guelph there are apparently videos of the material being handed out to people waiting in line to vote and brochures in the voting area. Do we need Haiti and Iraq vote observers to keep things legit? If this happened in Kabul we'd be shaking our heads.

      • Isn't it Harper himself who keeps using the word "obviously"? No, it's not "obviously" a false accusation. Conservatives are lying thugs like their leader. Now go kick a chair.

  5. Earlier: "Conservative Party lawyer Arthur Hamilton demanded that some 700 votes cast on campus by students be declared null and void."

    Having realized they're losing this particular fight (special ballots are indeed legal): “we applaud the decision not to disenfranchise University of Guelph students…"

    Hope they didn't get whiplash with that reversal.

    Tories. Never a dull moment.

  6. Earlier: "Conservative Party lawyer Arthur Hamilton demanded that some 700 votes cast on campus by students be declared null and void."

    Having realized they're losing this particular fight (special ballots are indeed legal): “we applaud the decision not to disenfranchise University of Guelph students…"

    Hope they didn't get whiplash with that reversal.

    Tories. Never a dull moment.

    • The CPC lawyer is just another one of their low-level staff who act without any authority. Happens all the time, whether it is their lawyer, someone in their war room, someone sending out letters from Ministers, someone illegally leaking documents, someone looking for people with colourful ethnic costumes, ….

      • Arthur Hamilton was the lawyer who got all excited after hearing the private dick's allegations toward Guergis and Jaffer.

        He loves declaring stuff.

        • private dicks, members of the bar … they're ll getting pretty cocky.

  7. Considering the number of loopholes the Cons have come up with, I assumed they knew the system very well.

    Apparently not….grabbing ballot boxes is absolutely verboten!

  8. Well, the upside of this little episode (besides exposing the ugly but appropriate optics of Con-goons trying to intimidate voters) is that we've had a good education in "special balloting".
    Perhaps we can ameliorate the damage of the voter-suppression that has been quietly implemented in the past few years. (ie Homeless, students and other itinerant populations were disenfranchised by messing with voter ID requirements.)
    So, where can we find more voters that need a bit of help to vote? Special ballots in all close ridings!

  9. Well, the upside of this little episode (besides exposing the ugly but appropriate optics of Con-goons trying to intimidate voters) is that we've had a good education in "special balloting".
    Perhaps we can ameliorate the damage of the voter-suppression that has been quietly implemented in the past few years. (ie Homeless, students and other itinerant populations were disenfranchised by messing with voter ID requirements.)
    So, where can we find more voters that need a bit of help to vote? Special ballots in all close ridings!

    • I think this is just going to motivate more students to vote. That might actually be a bit of a downside for Harper.

      • Let's hope.

    • that was quick:
      "Elections Canada also ruled Friday that no other special ballot will be authorized anywhere else in Canada during this campaign.
      The PMO's fast response has paid off. Another chapter in successful voter suppression. Thanks Stevie.

      • Actually, that's an interpretation of what EC said.

        O"nce Elections Canada officials were made aware of the local initiative in Guelph, the returning officer was instructed not to engage in any further activities of a similar nature. All returning officers have received this instruction."

        Which could also be read as

        "next time, remember to get prior approval, like you all used to do in past elections."

        It's really kind of fuzzy, when you step back and read it slowly…

        • thanks, so this scribe either misunderstood or deliberately slanted the EC decision …
          making voting accessible should be a non-partisan initiative – unfortunately NOT to the followers of Leo Strauss

    • You jest, of course. I hope. 'Special ballots' were abused in this case. That's why this was stopped by Elections Canada.

      Special ballots are for "special circumstances".

      We trust the military, implicitly. But each member of the military must also show ID and be on the voting list. The rules are no different. And soldiers don't head home and vote a second time.

      Soldiers are where they are to do their duty. A 'special ballot' makes sense.

      Nursing home residents vote where they are because often they can't get out to vote. And that is their address. A 'special ballot' makes sense.

      Retirement home residents vote where they are because often they can't get out to vote. And that is their address. A 'special ballot' makes sense.

      Prisoners vote where they are because they can't get out to vote. And that is their address. A 'special ballot' makes sense.

      But students are mobile, can get to a voting location, and often have two addresses, school and home. That is why their ID must be checked. And checked off. A 'special ballot' makes no sense. There is no legitimate record of who voted in Guelph because scrutineering was not done according the Election Act. Elections Canada #fail.

      • I used the special ballot for the first time this year. I was checked off the voters list. I did have to produce my ID. Then, I had to fill out a lovely form with all the usual information. Including email address, which worries me slightly. I was happy to fill out the form, though, it made the voting process somehow more engaging or important or something (I always feel a let down that its so damn easy to put the X beside the name. There is no fanfare, no long line (seldom a line at all) and two seconds behind a cardboard screen.) And then, once I had the ballot, I had to actually NAME the candidate–no X for me! I wondered if spelling was going to count. But the best part was the double sealed envelope bit. I didn't just put my ballot in the box, oh no, I had to put it in an envelope, then that envelope into another envelope, and THEN put it in the ballot box. Altogether, a very serious and important ritual. As the most important duty I have as a citizen, I enjoyed that.

        • Are you informing us that all of these conditions were met at the Guelph vote?

          • No, I wasn't there and have no idea. I was just trying to describe how the special ballot differs from regular polling stations.

    • "Well, the upside of this little episode …is that we've had a good education in "special balloting".

      Am I the only one who's sick to death of learning the fine details of our democratic rules when the Conservative Party abuses those rules? Prorogation? Parliamentary committees? Election Finance? Special ballots? Pre-release handling of the budget? Parliamentary appropriations?

      If I have to listen to one more party operative use tortured logic to show the government's actions were technically legal, I'm going to scream.

      • Why would you scream when your leader keeps telling us that observing all the rules is Democracy?
        And maybe you can tell us why Elections Canada ruled this procedure will not be allowed anywhere else.

  10. According to the CPC missive in response, it was an error (of course!) on the part of the returning electoral officer (assuredly!). Blame everyone else except yourselves for your stupidity.

    Way to stay classy CPC!

  11. According to the CPC missive in response, it was an error (of course!) on the part of the returning electoral officer (assuredly!). Blame everyone else except yourselves for your stupidity.

    Way to stay classy CPC!

    • Electoral fraud is never pretty. All Canadians should oppose this obvious fraud, including allowing non-scrutineered votes to be cast.

      Heads should roll and these ballots should not be counted. Especially when some can be expected to vote a second time at their homes.

      • Hmmm why does it seem that those who don't understand how elections and Parliament work are generally CPC supporters?

        Funny or sad…I can't decide which…

  12. How to play it safe.
    Friday, Tory spokesperson Ryan Sparrow neither confirmed nor denied Sona's presence on campus.

  13. I think this is just going to motivate more students to vote. That might actually be a bit of a downside for Harper.

  14. How to play it safe.
    Friday, Tory spokesperson Ryan Sparrow neither confirmed nor denied Sona%E2%80%99s presence on campus.

  15. How to play it safe.
    Friday, Tory spokesperson Ryan Sparrow neither confirmed nor denied Sona's presence on campus.

    • They have to figure out if there were any surveillance cameras first.

  16. The CPC lawyer is just another one of their low-level staff who act without any authority. Happens all the time, whether it is their lawyer, someone in their war room, someone sending out letters from Ministers, someone illegally leaking documents, someone looking for people with colourful ethnic costumes, ….

  17. LAND of the free, you @ss. And the home of the brave. When are you going to bother learning the words to the national anthem? Are you even Canadian?

  18. Let's hope.

  19. Just now I pictured you with the blue paint on your face riding your horse up and down the line as you rallied the troops. Sadly, I also noticed your belly was protruding out (in a not-very-nice way) over the waistband of your kilt and that your mum was calling you from the sidewalk "Fer chrissakes Jock, git yerrrr backside back home nouw and finish da vacuumin'. The vicar's coming over fer dinner tonight"

  20. I'm sorry, did I say your mum? I meant your wife.

    God love her.

  21. that was quick:
    "Elections Canada also ruled Friday that no other special ballot will be authorized anywhere else in Canada during this campaign.
    The PMO's fast response has paid off. Another chapter in successful voter suppression. Thanks Stevie.

  22. If you call that "the national anthem", then your own status as a Canadian is in question, Craigola.

    You might both try learning the Canadian anthem (hint: it's not the Hockey Night in Canada theme).

  23. well of course he made an error … he was following the law …. big mistake in Harperstan!!

  24. I regret that I was a smidge too subtle.

  25. You mean, you want a system that emulates the United States?

    Because that seems to work so terribly well for them.

  26. They have to figure out if there were any surveillance cameras first.

  27. Well, it does seem like a bizarre way to run Elections Canada—Advance Polling Stations ( I know, I know Special Ballot Boxes ) set up that they are unauthorized, rules about scrutineers and advertising near the poll ignored, a similar appeal by the Liberals in 2006 at U of T decided in Liberals favour.

    I suppose if anything good comes of this, it is that Elections Canada will be more vigilant or will feel pressured by the public to be more vigilant and fair-minded.

  28. Well, it does seem like a bizarre way to run Elections Canada—Advance Polling Stations ( I know, I know Special Ballot Boxes ) set up that they are unauthorized, rules about scrutineers and advertising near the poll ignored, a similar appeal by the Liberals in 2006 at U of T decided in Liberals favour.

    I suppose if anything good comes of this, it is that Elections Canada will be more vigilant or will feel pressured by the public to be more vigilant and fair-minded.

    • Well, hopefully this guy has some photographic evidence. So far it's his word versus a crowd of witnesses. I haven't heard anyone corroborate his story.

  29. "Once Elections Canada officials were made aware of the local initiative in Guelph, the returning officer was instructed not to engage in any further activities of a similar nature. All returning officers have received this instruction …….. All information at our disposal indicates that the votes were cast in a manner that respects the Canada Elections Act and are valid."

    Does not add up. If there were no problems, and everything is valid, why have returning officers been told to not do this anymore?

    Why is Elections Canada discouraging legal behaviour?

  30. "Once Elections Canada officials were made aware of the local initiative in Guelph, the returning officer was instructed not to engage in any further activities of a similar nature. All returning officers have received this instruction …….. All information at our disposal indicates that the votes were cast in a manner that respects the Canada Elections Act and are valid."

    Does not add up. If there were no problems, and everything is valid, why have returning officers been told to not do this anymore?

    Why is Elections Canada discouraging legal behaviour?

    • Because apparantly, the CPC can't tell the difference between legal and illegal behavior (big surprise) and it's not worth the trouble for EC to go through this again in the middle of an election.

      • That's seriously how you interpret that statement? And your the same person that goes around accusing Cons of lying no matter what they say?

        • Oh no.. the ones that have some suggestion of truth to their statements I don't call liars. Given the paucity of that number, however, I can see why you may have come to the wrong conclusion.

          And actually, yes, that's how I interpret the statement. By authorizing the votes, they acknowledged that it was legal for the returning officer to set up the special ballot without pre-authorization, but given the amount of trouble it caused because the CPC candidate didn't know the rules, they'd rather not do it again, thanks.

    • "Once Elections Canada officials were made aware of the local initiative in Guelph"

      Shouldn't they know about these things?

    • The answer, of course, is that it isn't legal behaviour. This ballot box should be tossed. The voting was not scutineered. It's illegal.

      • "A special ballot coordinator, appointed by the local returning officer, oversaw the activities at the University of Guelph." Straight from the article. THAT says it was legal and done legally.

    • My reading of the Elections Canada statement is to say that such special ballot stations that are approved in advance by Elections Canada are ok. This particular station at UoG was not pre-approved. I think Elections Canada's instructions to the returning officers are that going forward no such stations with no approval in advance should proceed. Stations that were approved in advance I presume are ok.

      And with that said, Elections Canada decided that, advance approval notwithstanding, there were no issues identified in how the station was conducted, and as such the ballots collected are valid.

  31. Love baiting the foolish – what does Canada or Canadians know of freedom with the likes of Harper – A parliament system that is a curse from old empire – we cannot even vote for our leader –- Canada is as free as a bird in a cage – (and it's your privilege to pay high taxes for your own slavery) –…strong and free do you prefer? (But that's a lie or fantasy if you prefer – easy not to face the facts) – You just demonstrated “form before function” how clever – the Canadian way – eh

  32. Love baiting the foolish – what does Canada or Canadians know of freedom with the likes of Harper – A parliament system that is a curse from old empire – we cannot even vote for our leader –- Canada is as free as a bird in a cage – (and it%E2%80%99s your privilege to pay high taxes for your own slavery) –…strong and free do you prefer? (But that%E2%80%99s a lie or fantasy if you prefer – easy not to face the facts) – You just demonstrated “form before function” how clever – the Canadian way – eh

  33. Elections Canada playing tit-for-tat re spending $1.5 million out of their budget fighting alledged Tory election fraud for a few years???

    Pretty sloppy with bending the rules, or for that matter, making up new ones, lol!!!

  34. Elections Canada playing tit-for-tat re spending $1.5 million out of their budget fighting alledged Tory election fraud for a few years???

    Pretty sloppy with bending the rules, or for that matter, making up new ones, lol!!!

    • So again, how do you do that? How do you manage to lie like that without any hint of conscience?

      Do all CPC boosters have this ability? Is it something you guys are trained in?

      • Practice, practice, practice.

      • If the rules are that ballot boxes must be pre-authorized and this one wasn't – they are bending the rules.

        • That's an extremely large "if" there. One not backed up by any of the regulations I've seen.

  35. The poor longsufferin' woman.

  36. Shorter GIGO: blah blah blah.

  37. Awesome strategy on student engagement Conservatives!

    Their parents are also wondering if you can you please threaten to remove their right to clean up after themselves?

  38. Awesome strategy on student engagement Conservatives!

    Their parents are also wondering if you can you please threaten to remove their right to clean up after themselves?

  39. Arthur Hamilton was the lawyer who got all excited after hearing the private dick's allegations toward Guergis and Jaffer.

    He loves declaring stuff.

  40. I had seen this last week, and was a little surprised that a party could promote special balloting in this manner
    http://www.conservative.ca/vote/vote/vote_

    In light of all this – I wonder if it is on the up and up. If you can't have partisan advertising around a special ballot box – how can you promote special balloting on a partisan web-site?

  41. Actually, that's an interpretation of what EC said.

    O"nce Elections Canada officials were made aware of the local initiative in Guelph, the returning officer was instructed not to engage in any further activities of a similar nature. All returning officers have received this instruction."

    Which could also be read as

    "next time, remember to get prior approval, like you all used to do in past elections."

    It's really kind of fuzzy, when you step back and read it slowly…

  42. I had seen this last week, and was a little surprised that a party could promote special balloting in this manner
    http://www.conservative.ca/vote/vote/vote_

    In light of all this – I wonder if it is on the up and up. If you can't have partisan advertising around a special ballot box – how can you promote special balloting on a partisan web-site?

    • Oh dear. THAT is an inconvenient contradiction to the ol' party line eh?

    • That website (which I just looked at, thanks for the link) tells you how to contact Elections Canada to vote. It notes you have to have personal identification and a specific reason for voting that way. And it notes you must do so at specific place with credentials checked. Every ad from every political party urges people to vote. No difference. procedure is the difference. In Guelph procedures were not followed.

      • If procedures were not followed why are they allowing the votes to stand?

  43. Well, hopefully this guy has some photographic evidence. So far it's his word versus a crowd of witnesses. I haven't heard anyone corroborate his story.

  44. Because apparantly, the CPC can't tell the difference between legal and illegal behavior (big surprise) and it's not worth the trouble for EC to go through this again in the middle of an election.

  45. So again, how do you do that? How do you manage to lie like that without any hint of conscience?

    Do all CPC boosters have this ability? Is it something you guys are trained in?

  46. You want a president, move south. I don't.

  47. Oh dear. THAT is an inconvenient contradiction to the ol' party line eh?

  48. thanks, so this scribe either misunderstood or deliberately slanted the EC decision …
    making voting accessible should be a non-partisan initiative – unfortunately NOT to the followers of Leo Strauss

  49. A little tale…

    We have a severe dislike on for university polling places of any sort. We do not do well there. Although we made no national decision to disrupt them, local campaigns – especially those in very tight swing races – may feel a need to do so. Our operative in Guelph may have gone a bit overboard when he apparently tried to grab a ballot box, but his presence gave us enough info to challenge the validity of the Special Ballot here. We really had no expectation that EC would reject the votes cast, but have accomplished something even more valuable (to us): an outright ban on such special on campus votes across the country for this election (and likely forever). The more difficult it is for students to vote, the fewer who will attempt it. Suits us fine. Mission accomplished.

    So, we are thrilled with the outcome.

  50. A little tale…

    We have a severe dislike on for university polling places of any sort. We do not do well there. Although we made no national decision to disrupt them, local campaigns – especially those in very tight swing races – may feel a need to do so. Our operative in Guelph may have gone a bit overboard when he apparently tried to grab a ballot box, but his presence gave us enough info to challenge the validity of the Special Ballot here. We really had no expectation that EC would reject the votes cast, but have accomplished something even more valuable (to us): an outright ban on such special on campus votes across the country for this election (and likely forever). The more difficult it is for students to vote, the fewer who will attempt it. Suits us fine. Mission accomplished.

    So, we are thrilled with the outcome.

    • Load of bull. ALL political parties should and do promote legitimate voting with legitimate rules. But in Guelph the rules were not followed… That's why Elections Canada has banned further unauthorized efforts (you'd think something "unauthorized" wouldn't be acceptable, anyway, wouldn't you?).

      This is about electoral fraud. No party wants valid voting cancelled. Cancel fraud, though.

    • Wow! What a statement "The more difficult it is for students to vote, the fewer who will attempt it. Suits us fine. Mission accomplished." I suggest everyone on here that is trying to stop a Reckless Conservative Majority from stealing power from the Canadian people, copy and paste this statement all over social media. The youth movement is gaining ground and it is exactly statements like this that will get more and more youth involved. They are some 3 million strong.
      You can start on youtube
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SEf34V2rmaM&fe
      POST THEHARPERGOV's MESSAGE EVERYWHERE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      • Thank you TheHarperGov.

        • You are welcome.

          Sometimes people who don't have a clue, still 'get it'. Heartening in a disheartening sort of way.

      • Why dont you tell us why Elections Canada will not allow this anywhere else?
        If you feel so strongly about this issue why dont you tell us how wrong Elections Canada is for stopping this.

  51. That's seriously how you interpret that statement? And your the same person that goes around accusing Cons of lying no matter what they say?

  52. private dicks, members of the bar … they're ll getting pretty cocky.

  53. If the rules are that ballot boxes must be pre-authorized and this one wasn't – they are bending the rules.

  54. You want a President? Drive south; see if they'll have you.

    The system we have could do with some revamping, but emulate the US? Puhleese!

  55. That was a false accusation, obviously.

    But the "special ballot coordinator" was outright fraud. I hope and expect this to be tossed out and charges to be laid. The Deputy Returning Officer should be replaced. Scrutineers protect our democracy but their presence was denied. That alone should cause this to be tossed. handing out election materials even near a polling station is illegal. At Guelph there are apparently videos of the material being handed out to people waiting in line to vote and brochures in the voting area. Do we need Haiti and Iraq vote observers to keep things legit? If this happened in Kabul we'd be shaking our heads.

  56. Oh no.. the ones that have some suggestion of truth to their statements I don't call liars. Given the paucity of that number, however, I can see why you may have come to the wrong conclusion.

    And actually, yes, that's how I interpret the statement. By authorizing the votes, they acknowledged that it was legal for the returning officer to set up the special ballot without pre-authorization, but given the amount of trouble it caused because the CPC candidate didn't know the rules, they'd rather not do it again, thanks.

  57. "Once Elections Canada officials were made aware of the local initiative in Guelph"

    Shouldn't they know about these things?

  58. That's an extremely large "if" there. One not backed up by any of the regulations I've seen.

  59. Apparently you like repeating serious allegations without proof, whether you're the "original" Emily or not.

    It was fraud. Every Canadian should oppose it.

  60. Apparently you like repeating serious allegations without proof, whether you're the "original" Emily or not.

    It was fraud. Every Canadian should oppose it.

    • Kindly don't pretend it didn't happen….we know better.

      That nonsense is the only fraud involved here.

  61. Kindly don't pretend it didn't happen….we know better.

    That nonsense is the only fraud involved here.

  62. You jest, of course. I hope. 'Special ballots' were abused in this case. That's why this was stopped by Elections Canada.

    Special ballots are for "special circumstances".

    We trust the military, implicitly. But each member of the military must also show ID and be on the voting list. The rules are no different. And soldiers don't head home and vote a second time.

    Soldiers are where they are to do their duty. A 'special ballot' makes sense.

    Nursing home residents vote where they are because often they can't get out to vote. And that is their address. A 'special ballot' makes sense.

    Retirement home residents vote where they are because often they can't get out to vote. And that is their address. A 'special ballot' makes sense.

    Prisoners vote where they are because they can't get out to vote. And that is their address. A 'special ballot' makes sense.

    But students are mobile, can get to a voting location, and often have two addresses, school and home. That is why their ID must be checked. And checked off. A 'special ballot' makes no sense. There is no legitimate record of who voted in Guelph because scrutineering was not done according the Election Act. Elections Canada #fail.

  63. Electoral fraud is never pretty. All Canadians should oppose this obvious fraud, including allowing non-scrutineered votes to be cast.

    Heads should roll and these ballots should not be counted. Especially when some can be expected to vote a second time at their homes.

  64. Once Elections Canada officials were made aware of the local initiative in Guelph, the returning officer was instructed not to engage in any further activities of a similar nature. All returning officers have received this instruction…
    All information at our disposal indicates that the votes were cast in a manner that respects the Canada Elections Act and are valid.

    Everything's peachy, but don't anybody dare do it again. Can anyone NOT willing to throw partisan taunts and pathetic "liar!" insults take a stab at deciphering this EC nonsense?

  65. The answer, of course, is that it isn't legal behaviour. This ballot box should be tossed. The voting was not scutineered. It's illegal.

  66. Once Elections Canada officials were made aware of the local initiative in Guelph, the returning officer was instructed not to engage in any further activities of a similar nature. All returning officers have received this instruction…
    All information at our disposal indicates that the votes were cast in a manner that respects the Canada Elections Act and are valid.

    Everything's peachy, but don't anybody dare do it again. Can anyone NOT willing to throw partisan taunts and pathetic "liar!" insults take a stab at deciphering this EC nonsense?

    • And I haven't seen enough in any report so far to see how close to (or over) the line this Guelph initiative came to the pretty clear sentence from EC's own Service Standards:
      Special ballot kiosks on campus, where students could apply and vote at the same time, are not permitted.
      (bolded negative in the original text)

      http://www.elections.ca/res/pub/ecdocs/EC10047_e….

    • To ensure students' access to the vote, returning officers are expected to set up polling stations for election day in the lobbies or meeting rooms of student residences. If this is not feasible, they should establish polling stations elsewhere on campus. The best location is one that is convenient but not in a high-traffic area; otherwise, students not living on campus may think that it is set up for all students when it is actually set up only for students living on campus.

      So setting up in a high-traffic area is against EC's own Service Standards, even on the day of the election itself.

      Just what was this stunt that the local returning officer pulled, anyways? A special ballot gets returned in person or by mail before a prescribed deadline, no? Just what is the "ballot box" doing there for special ballots, anyways?

    • Thank you for taking to time to investigate the issue in a calm, rational manner. EC's reaction seems a bit over the top.

    • Yeah…I wouldn't do it again either given the propensity of the CPC to take a completely legal and worthy method of ensuring that people have the option to vote available to them, and turn it into yet another attempt to denigrate and destroy the reputation of an internationally respected Canadian institution.

      Funny how crying foul at every turn with half-truths bordering on lies is a tact that has insidiously seeped into the fabric of what used to be an honourable institution.

      Thank you Harper. Thank you CPC. We are now officially a banana republic.

      • This internationally respected Canadian institution seems to have fallen on hard times. It appears they have somewhat loose rules and the play loosey-goosey with them. A complete overhaul may be necessary to remove the obvious partisans within the organization.

        Lorraine, down below, would like the CPC to fund this reorganization. I would be more fair and propose that a portion of each parties vote subsidy should go to cleaning up this mess.

        • I see…Elections Canada has a bunch of "obvious partisans", that have clearly caused headaches for the CPC, so much so that staffers feel the need to uphold our democratic rights and attempt to take away ballot boxes rather than, well, try to convince people the merits of voting for them.

          You guys are a bunch of conspiracy nutjobs…

          • Well since Elections Canada has laid charges against four Conservatives including two who are now Senators; all Conservative commenters here assume EC is evil, because they know that Conservatives Never Ever Do Anything Wrong.
            http://www.straight.com/article-376850/vancouver/

      • Alas, I must repeat myself: Can anyone NOT willing to throw partisan taunts and pathetic "liar!" insults take a stab at deciphering this EC nonsense?

        • Perhaps if a non-partisan person asked the question in the first place…

          • You will note that it is fairly obvious I am not directing my repeated question at you, Holly.

    • This was unauthorized by Ottawa — a voting poll of a type normally used for soldiers, the infirm and prisoners.
      By all accounts this was a Liberal production — the sitting MP names the Deputy Returning Officer (DRO)
      Elections Canada in Ottawa has determined this was wrong and banned all similar polls.
      This should be rejected, too.
      Why? Because each candidate has the right (see Electoral Act) to have a "scrutineer" in place to scrutinize the credentials of every voter, something that is critically important when students are voting — because they have been to vote in two places: 1. where they go to school and 2. where their parents live — and they only way to police that is to make sure their credentials are confirmed (i.e. their driver's license will have one address or the other, so a vote can be cast in only one location can be ensured — which is why credentials must be confirmed at each polling station)
      At this poll, scrutineers weren't allowed from all parties.
      Additionally, polling stations are supposed to be absolutely neutral — no signs, no brochures, no buttons, etc.
      There is evidence, however, that the Liberals were passing out brochures and were "electioneering" to people in line to vote, which is strictly illegal.
      Were the same people involved with the so-called "vote mobs" ? And, if so, does that mean that "vote mobs" are actually a Liberal 'get out the vote' effort? If so, why not admit it, if not, why not be clear about that?

    • It might help if EC would cite the provisions of the Act with which this unauthorized event was in accordance.

      Alternatively, since you seem to understand how elections work, maybe you'd like to take a stab at it?

      • There will be no desire by accusers on this site, by the quick-to jump LPC, by the media, or indeed by Elections Canada to answer the question from myl, unless they can see some way to pin the blame on the CPC.

    • From the U-Guelph student newspaper, a pretty good run-down for its student readers on how to register to vote, and how to vote either in an advance poll, on the election day itself, or by special ballot:
      http://www.theontarion.com/2011/04/want-to-vote-b

      What is missing is the notion of "primary residence" for students from out of town who may choose to declare their "permanent home" as the primary residence, thus needing a special ballot to vote in a (potentially) faraway riding.

      What is also missing is any mention of this infamous unauthorized-but-retroactively-and-creatively-declared -legitimate "special ballot box" event from earlier this week.

  67. And I haven't seen enough in any report so far to see how close to (or over) the line this Guelph initiative came to the pretty clear sentence from EC's own Service Standards:
    Special ballot kiosks on campus, where students could apply and vote at the same time, are not permitted.
    (bolded negative in the original text)

    http://www.elections.ca/res/pub/ecdocs/EC10047_e….

  68. "Well, the upside of this little episode …is that we've had a good education in "special balloting".

    Am I the only one who's sick to death of learning the fine details of our democratic rules when the Conservative Party abuses those rules? Prorogation? Parliamentary committees? Election Finance? Special ballots? Pre-release handling of the budget? Parliamentary appropriations?

    If I have to listen to one more party operative use tortured logic to show the government's actions were technically legal, I'm going to scream.

  69. To ensure students' access to the vote, returning officers are expected to set up polling stations for election day in the lobbies or meeting rooms of student residences. If this is not feasible, they should establish polling stations elsewhere on campus. The best location is one that is convenient but not in a high-traffic area; otherwise, students not living on campus may think that it is set up for all students when it is actually set up only for students living on campus.

    So setting up in a high-traffic area is against EC's own Service Standards, even on the day of the election itself.

    Just what was this stunt that the local returning officer pulled, anyways? A special ballot gets returned in person or by mail before a prescribed deadline, no? Just what is the "ballot box" doing there for special ballots, anyways?

  70. To ensure students%E2%80%99 access to the vote, returning officers are expected to set up polling stations for election day in the lobbies or meeting rooms of student residences. If this is not feasible, they should establish polling stations elsewhere on campus. The best location is one that is convenient but not in a high-traffic area; otherwise, students not living on campus may think that it is set up for all students when it is actually set up only for students living on campus.

    So setting up in a high-traffic area is against EC's own Service Standards, even on the day of the election itself.

    Just what was this stunt that the local returning officer pulled, anyways? A special ballot gets returned in person or by mail before a prescribed deadline, no? Just what is the "ballot box" doing there for special ballots, anyways?

  71. That website (which I just looked at, thanks for the link) tells you how to contact Elections Canada to vote. It notes you have to have personal identification and a specific reason for voting that way. And it notes you must do so at specific place with credentials checked. Every ad from every political party urges people to vote. No difference. procedure is the difference. In Guelph procedures were not followed.

  72. It might help if EC would cite the provisions of the Act with which this unauthorized event was in accordance.

  73. Isn't it Harper himself who keeps using the word "obviously"? No, it's not "obviously" a false accusation. Conservatives are lying thugs like their leader. Now go kick a chair.

  74. Thank you for taking to time to investigate the issue in a calm, rational manner. EC's reaction seems a bit over the top.

  75. My reading of the Elections Canada statement is to say that such special ballot stations that are approved in advance by Elections Canada are ok. This particular station at UoG was not pre-approved. I think Elections Canada's instructions to the returning officers are that going forward no such stations with no approval in advance should proceed. Stations that were approved in advance I presume are ok.

    And with that said, Elections Canada decided that, advance approval notwithstanding, there were no issues identified in how the station was conducted, and as such the ballots collected are valid.

  76. Translation:

    The elections fraud was appropriately anti-Harper so no prosecution or even investigation will take place.

    We'll just try to quietly walk away from this whole thing as if nothing happened.

  77. Translation:

    The elections fraud was appropriately anti-Harper so no prosecution or even investigation will take place.

    We'll just try to quietly walk away from this whole thing as if nothing happened.

    • Translation:

      Whine, whine, whine.

      B!tch, b!tch, complain.

    • "A special ballot coordinator, appointed by the local returning officer, oversaw the activities at the University of Guelph."
      Are you intentionally missing this in the above article or, are you stooopid? just kidding.. really. But, the vote had a ballot coordinator and that makes it <tada!> LEGAL!

  78. Hmmm why does it seem that those who don't understand how elections and Parliament work are generally CPC supporters?

    Funny or sad…I can't decide which…

  79. Translation:

    Whine, whine, whine.

    B!tch, b!tch, complain.

  80. There will be no desire by accusers on this site, by the quick-to jump LPC, by the media, or indeed by Elections Canada to answer the question from myl, unless they can see some way to pin the blame on the CPC.

  81. If procedures were not followed why are they allowing the votes to stand?

  82. Yeah…I wouldn't do it again either given the propensity of the CPC to take a completely legal and worthy method of ensuring that people have the option to vote available to them, and turn it into yet another attempt to denigrate and destroy the reputation of an internationally respected Canadian institution.

    Funny how crying foul at every turn with half-truths bordering on lies is a tact that has insidiously seeped into the fabric of what used to be an honourable institution.

    Thank you Harper. Thank you CPC. We are now officially a banana republic.

  83. I used the special ballot for the first time this year. I was checked off the voters list. I did have to produce my ID. Then, I had to fill out a lovely form with all the usual information. Including email address, which worries me slightly. I was happy to fill out the form, though, it made the voting process somehow more engaging or important or something (I always feel a let down that its so damn easy to put the X beside the name. There is no fanfare, no long line (seldom a line at all) and two seconds behind a cardboard screen.) And then, once I had the ballot, I had to actually NAME the candidate–no X for me! I wondered if spelling was going to count. But the best part was the double sealed envelope bit. I didn't just put my ballot in the box, oh no, I had to put it in an envelope, then that envelope into another envelope, and THEN put it in the ballot box. Altogether, a very serious and important ritual. As the most important duty I have as a citizen, I enjoyed that.

  84. Load of bull. ALL political parties should and do promote legitimate voting with legitimate rules. But in Guelph the rules were not followed… That's why Elections Canada has banned further unauthorized efforts (you'd think something "unauthorized" wouldn't be acceptable, anyway, wouldn't you?).

    This is about electoral fraud. No party wants valid voting cancelled. Cancel fraud, though.

  85. Wow! What a statement "The more difficult it is for students to vote, the fewer who will attempt it. Suits us fine. Mission accomplished." I suggest everyone on here that is trying to stop a Reckless Conservative Majority from stealing power from the Canadian people, copy and paste this statement all over social media. The youth movement is gaining ground and it is exactly statements like this that will get more and more youth involved. They are some 3 million strong.
    You can start on youtube
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SEf34V2rmaM&fe
    POST THEHARPERGOV's MESSAGE EVERYWHERE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  86. Thank you TheHarperGov.

  87. This was unauthorized by Ottawa — a voting poll of a type normally used for soldiers, the infirm and prisoners.
    By all accounts this was a Liberal production — the sitting MP names the Deputy Returning Officer (DRO)
    Elections Canada in Ottawa has determined this was wrong and banned all similar polls.
    This should be rejected, too.
    Why? Because each candidate has the right (see Electoral Act) to have a "scrutineer" in place to scrutinize the credentials of every voter, something that is critically important when students are voting — because they have been to vote in two places: 1. where they go to school and 2. where their parents live — and they only way to police that is to make sure their credentials are confirmed (i.e. their driver's license will have one address or the other, so a vote can be cast in only one location can be ensured — which is why credentials must be confirmed at each polling station)
    At this poll, scrutineers weren't allowed from all parties.
    Additionally, polling stations are supposed to be absolutely neutral — no signs, no brochures, no buttons, etc.
    There is evidence, however, that the Liberals were passing out brochures and were "electioneering" to people in line to vote, which is strictly illegal.
    Were the same people involved with the so-called "vote mobs" ? And, if so, does that mean that "vote mobs" are actually a Liberal 'get out the vote' effort? If so, why not admit it, if not, why not be clear about that?

  88. Alas, I must repeat myself: Can anyone NOT willing to throw partisan taunts and pathetic "liar!" insults take a stab at deciphering this EC nonsense?

  89. Let's take another look at the Service Standards for Ensuring Accessible Registration and Voting Processes for Student Electors, shall we?

    Guiding Principles
    The following principles underlie our approach to facilitating student voting:

  90. Let's take another look at the Service Standards for Ensuring Accessible Registration and Voting Processes for Student Electors, shall we?

    Guiding Principles
    The following principles underlie our approach to facilitating student voting:

    • Students should have the same access to the vote as other voters.

      Oops. Looks like some students have MORE access to the vote as other voters.

    • Students are responsible for determining their place of ordinary residence.

      I sincerely hope everybody understood this to mean choose a SINGLE place of ordinary residence.

    • Outreach to students should be an ongoing effort between and during electoral events.

      Fair to say this one is covered, I suppose.

    • A community relations officer for youth will be authorized for any electoral district with at least one post-secondary institution and/or 10 percent or more of its population aged between 18 and 24 years.

      If such officer could read the manual, that would be swell.

    • Returning officers must recruit students to offer services to students, whenever possible.

      Maybe they could read the manual, too? It's available online!

    • When political parties provide names of people to be hired as election officers, Elections Canada will continue to encourage them to recommend youth, including student voters, wherever possible.

      "… will continue to encourage them… wherever possible." Can a nicer-sounding phrase of unenforceable nothingness be devised? Probably, but it would take a fair bit of effort.

    • All stakeholders need to be aware of the options students have for registering and voting in a timely manner.

      Splendid. Can we declare the actual EC staff as stakeholders, too? Maybe that would get them to RTFM, too.

  91. Students should have the same access to the vote as other voters.

    Oops. Looks like some students have MORE access to the vote as other voters.

  92. Students are responsible for determining their place of ordinary residence.

    I sincerely hope everybody understood this to mean choose a SINGLE place of ordinary residence.

  93. Outreach to students should be an ongoing effort between and during electoral events.

    Fair to say this one is covered, I suppose.

  94. A community relations officer for youth will be authorized for any electoral district with at least one post-secondary institution and/or 10 percent or more of its population aged between 18 and 24 years.

    If such officer could read the manual, that would be swell.

  95. Returning officers must recruit students to offer services to students, whenever possible.

    Maybe they could read the manual, too? It's available online!

  96. When political parties provide names of people to be hired as election officers, Elections Canada will continue to encourage them to recommend youth, including student voters, wherever possible.

    "… will continue to encourage them… wherever possible." Can a nicer-sounding phrase of unenforceable nothingness be devised? Probably, but it would take a fair bit of effort.

  97. All stakeholders need to be aware of the options students have for registering and voting in a timely manner.

    Splendid. Can we declare the actual EC staff as stakeholders, too? Maybe that would get them to RTFM, too.

  98. Oh good. He was following the law, you say. Splendid. I have been trying to find the provision in the Elections Canada Act that was properly followed. I am so glad you found it. Please, share!

  99. Oh good. He was following the law, you say. Splendid. I have been trying to find the provision in the Elections Canada Act that was properly followed. I am so glad you found it. Please, share!

  100. It might help if EC would cite the provisions of the Act with which this unauthorized event was in accordance.

    Alternatively, since you seem to understand how elections work, maybe you'd like to take a stab at it?

  101. One thing is 100 % clear to me : trying to cease a ballot box is forbidden.

    I now read certain Conservatives claim that some of ECs regulations and practices need to be reviewed. As a party they have been the beneficiary of more taxpayer-fuding than any other parties for many years. They would have been wiser to invest some towards such a review. That they squandered it, on the monitoring of citizens Facebook pages for example, on attack ads outside of an election period for another, proves their inability to focus on doing what is necessary at the right time. As always, a clear lack of leadership in that party.

  102. One thing is 100 % clear to me : trying to cease a ballot box is forbidden.

    I now read certain Conservatives claim that some of ECs regulations and practices need to be reviewed. As a party they have been the beneficiary of more taxpayer-fuding than any other parties for many years. They would have been wiser to invest some towards such a review. That they squandered it, on the monitoring of citizens Facebook pages for example, on attack ads outside of an election period for another, proves their inability to focus on doing what is necessary at the right time. As always, a clear lack of leadership in that party.

    • Well, then, madam 100%, you will kindly cite the provision of the federal elections law currently in force that states this peculiar Guelph ballot box was legitimate?

      UPDATE 8 hours later: Exactly. I can't cite one, either.

  103. You are welcome.

    Sometimes people who don't have a clue, still 'get it'. Heartening in a disheartening sort of way.

  104. This internationally respected Canadian institution seems to have fallen on hard times. It appears they have somewhat loose rules and the play loosey-goosey with them. A complete overhaul may be necessary to remove the obvious partisans within the organization.

    Lorraine, down below, would like the CPC to fund this reorganization. I would be more fair and propose that a portion of each parties vote subsidy should go to cleaning up this mess.

  105. I see…Elections Canada has a bunch of "obvious partisans", that have clearly caused headaches for the CPC, so much so that staffers feel the need to uphold our democratic rights and attempt to take away ballot boxes rather than, well, try to convince people the merits of voting for them.

    You guys are a bunch of conspiracy nutjobs…

  106. Well since Elections Canada has laid charges against four Conservatives including two who are now Senators; all Conservative commenters here assume EC is evil, because they know that Conservatives Never Ever Do Anything Wrong.
    http://www.straight.com/article-376850/vancouver/

  107. <a href="http://www.projectdemocracy.ca” target=”_blank”>www.projectdemocracy.ca
    A website with built in statistics to help you vote wise and prevent another "Harper Government".
    Spread the word and save Canada from a facist regime.

  108. http://www.projectdemocracy.ca
    A website with built in statistics to help you vote wise and prevent another "Harper Government".
    Spread the word and save Canada from a facist regime.

    • The tories have lied to a hostile parliment. Lets agree on that. They are the 'right wing' party of Canda. Cool. They enjoy calling the NDP socialists. Whatever. You want to throw those at the party, well you have a case but fascist?! Really? On a lot of issues the tories match up with the Democrats in America to provide you with a local example, would you suggest Obama or perhaps one of his more conservative fellow party members are on level with the nazis? Sound a bit ridicoulus? Well lets go back to Canadian politics and lets call the Harper Government (and by the way its ok to just say the Harper Government he has changed the mast heads, for whatever insane reason) a fascist regime. Allright, if you still think you've come across as sane maybe its time for a quick refresh course in both Canadian politics and the history of World War 2. And that was my long winded way of saying "What The Hell Goes Through Some People's Heads?!?"

  109. Well, then, madam 100%, you will kindly cite the provision of the federal elections law currently in force that states this peculiar Guelph ballot box was legitimate?

    UPDATE 8 hours later: Exactly. I can't cite one, either.

  110. Are you informing us that all of these conditions were met at the Guelph vote?

  111. Why would you scream when your leader keeps telling us that observing all the rules is Democracy?
    And maybe you can tell us why Elections Canada ruled this procedure will not be allowed anywhere else.

  112. Why dont you tell us why Elections Canada will not allow this anywhere else?
    If you feel so strongly about this issue why dont you tell us how wrong Elections Canada is for stopping this.

  113. No, I wasn't there and have no idea. I was just trying to describe how the special ballot differs from regular polling stations.

  114. Perhaps if a non-partisan person asked the question in the first place…

  115. You will note that it is fairly obvious I am not directing my repeated question at you, Holly.

  116. From the U-Guelph student newspaper, a pretty good run-down for its student readers on how to register to vote, and how to vote either in an advance poll, on the election day itself, or by special ballot:
    http://www.theontarion.com/2011/04/want-to-vote-b

    What is missing is the notion of "primary residence" for students from out of town who may choose to declare their "permanent home" as the primary residence, thus needing a special ballot to vote in a (potentially) faraway riding.

    What is also missing is any mention of this infamous unauthorized-but-retroactively-and-creatively-declared -legitimate "special ballot box" event from earlier this week.

  117. From the U-Guelph student newspaper, a pretty good run-down for its student readers on how to register to vote, and how to vote either in an advance poll, on the election day itself, or by special ballot:
    http://www.theontarion.com/2011/04/want-to-vote-b

    What is missing is the notion of "primary residence" for students from out of town who may choose to declare their "permanent home" as the primary residence, thus needing a special ballot to vote in a (potentially) faraway riding.

    What is also missing is any mention of this infamous unauthorized-but-retroactively-and-creatively-declared -legitimate "special ballot box" event from earlier this week.

  118. TJ, please show us the Special Ballot provisions of the Canada Elections Act that were followed properly by this unauthorized event's organizer, and those that were abused by the Conservatives. I will help you, I will even provide the link to the Canada Elections Act for you. Take your time.
    http://laws-lois.justice.gc.ca/PDF/E-2.01.pdf

    But then, that's a lot of words to sift through. So maybe you'd like to start with Elections Canada's Service Standards for its efforts in encouraging students to vote. Again, take your time:
    http://www.elections.ca/res/pub/ecdocs/EC10047_e….

  119. The tories have lied to a hostile parliment. Lets agree on that. They are the 'right wing' party of Canda. Cool. They enjoy calling the NDP socialists. Whatever. You want to throw those at the party, well you have a case but fascist?! Really? On a lot of issues the tories match up with the Democrats in America to provide you with a local example, would you suggest Obama or perhaps one of his more conservative fellow party members are on level with the nazis? Sound a bit ridicoulus? Well lets go back to Canadian politics and lets call the Harper Government (and by the way its ok to just say the Harper Government he has changed the mast heads, for whatever insane reason) a fascist regime. Allright, if you still think you've come across as sane maybe its time for a quick refresh course in both Canadian politics and the history of World War 2. And that was my long winded way of saying "What The Hell Goes Through Some People's Heads?!?"

  120. "A special ballot coordinator, appointed by the local returning officer, oversaw the activities at the University of Guelph." Straight from the article. THAT says it was legal and done legally.

  121. "A special ballot coordinator, appointed by the local returning officer, oversaw the activities at the University of Guelph."
    Are you intentionally missing this in the above article or, are you stooopid? just kidding.. really. But, the vote had a ballot coordinator and that makes it <tada!> LEGAL!