Councillor Don Palmer Providing Local Leadership & Working for You

Seriously, how will you vote and who will you vote for? For many, this will depend on which level of government you are voting for.

How will you voteThis calendar year we have three elections here in South Australia. The State Election, which is in the process right now. Polling day is on our doorstep. The Federal Election is due in May. Then, finally, the Local Government election in November.

You have a choice in who you will vote for. Of course I do, you tell me. And I am not telling you who. That’s fine. I don’t want you to.

What I am asking you is deeper than what my question might sound like on the surface. For many of you, the way you vote will change depending on which level of government you are voting for.

This is a question in respect of both State and Federal elections I have discussed with many. The answers from these people vary markedly.

The choice is more complex in those elections than in Local Government elections. In Local Government elections, you vote separately for your Mayor and your local ward member/s. Two distinct and separate choices. You have a direct influence over both who will represent you locally and who will lead the Council for the next term.

In the other elections, you still vote for your local member. Even if you cast a vote based on who would prefer to see being Premier or Prime Minister. Even if you vote based on which party you prefer to be in power.

You do not get to vote for the Premier (State) or the Prime Minister (Federal). Not directly.

Your vote influences who might become Premier or Prime Minister. This is by way of the fact that a Premier, a Prime Minister (Indeed a political party for whom they are the leader) are elected as a result of your preferred candidate being a member of the political party whose members are form a majority.

So, I ask you again. When you cast your vote in the State & Federal elections are you (like me) voting for the local candidate, doing this because you believe he or she is the best candidate to represent you. Has that candidate done enough to warrant your vote?

Do you only vote for them in order to vote for the Premier or Prime Minister you would prefer to see voted in. Or are you simply voting for them because they are a member of the party you would prefer to form a Government?

Such is the Westminster system.