October 6th, 2021


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Voting in advance: A thought

This particular case of voting has annoyed me. The whole point of representative democracy is that people's voices are heard, and a law being passed (or not passed) because a bit of technology failed at an inopportune moment seems to be a violation of that. There's also been a lot of cases of representatives having to turn up to places while ill, or heavily pregnant, or otherwise when being other places would have been more useful, and it seems ridiculous in the modern age that we can't manage this better.

Proxy voting would fix this, of course. But so would a very simple fix of letting people vote *in advance*. These votes are public, the choices that representatives make are a matter of record. I'm sure there have been occasions when people have changed their mind at the last minute, but that's easily dealt with by letting them change their vote until the vote closes.

Most of the time a politician knows how they're going to vote on the Conservative Bill for Doing Things Conservatively a long time before the vote is held. So open the vote a week earlier, and let them record whether they support it or not. And the same with amendments - there's a lot of back-room dealing that goes on, but that just means that people need to be able to update their vote before it's "counted" when the poll closes.

Is there an obvious problem with this? Something I'm missing? Or is this just "How it's always been done"?
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