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Voting in federal and state elections is compulsory in Australia. So on Election Day a carrot and stick approach is used to get the Aussies to the polls. The stick is a hefty fine for non participation. The carrot is, being Australia, a barbecue or sausage sizzle at the polling station. Unlike the UK you can choose where to cast your vote, and a page on the internet listed all the polling stations, and which ones were offering snags (sausages) or cakes- the stalls being run by local charities. We chose a station which combined voting with a school fete- in the hope of better ‘carrots’. Being a mild, sunny winter afternoon, the queue to vote was long, or maybe it was the queue for the snags.¬†As usual, all the canvassers were out, tying to gain some last minute influence on the electoral outcome – beef or pork or vegan? White bread, brown bread. Tomato sauce or mustard?

20160702-222921.jpgAs a non-citizen I do not have a vote, but I am entitled to the sausages, themselves becoming something of a political issue on Twitter #democracysausage

The voting syste20160702-220949.jpgm itself is complex involving ranking all the candidates in preferential order. Dennis the Election Koala explains it here.


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Pedal power.