Monday, September 10, 2007

Veiled Voting In Canada

Elections Canada gets hammered from all directions.

1 comment:

Lord Kitchener's Own said...

PARLIAMENT should be getting hammered from all directiuons, not Elections Canada.

Elections Canada didn't pass a law which has NO REQUIREMENT FOR THE VISUAL IDENTIFICATION OF VOTERS, Parliament did.

If Parliament never passed a law requiring voters to show their faces at polling stations, and more importantly never passed a law requiring voters to provide photo ID at polling stations then who is Elections Canada to impose a requirement on voters that Canadian law does not impose???

Now, if the law was mute on covered faces, but required voters to show photo ID, THEN I would expect Elections Canada to require voters who wear a religious face covering to uncover their faces (though I would expect it to be done in reasonable privacy, beofore an official of the same sex), because obviously a requirement to show photo ID would be meaningless if one cannot compare the photo on the ID to the person at the polling station. However, Canadian elections law has no requirement for voters to provide photo ID, or in any other way be visually identified before voting. So I don't see how Elections Canada would be justified in asking that women uncover their faces, when there's no requirement that they provide anything to compare their faces too. It's not the job of Elections Canada to impose requirements on voters that are not found in Canadian law, especially when such an added requirment would be MEANINGLESS under Canadian law (Let me see your face. OK, now that I've seen your face, despite that fact that I have no idea what you're supposed to look like, I now accept that you are the person on these two non-photo pieces of ID! Thanks for unveiling so that I could compare the face under the veil to ABSOLUTELY NOTHING!!!).

Why demand to see the face of a voter if you aren't going to demand a piece of ID with a picture of the voter? More importantly, is Elections Canada in a position to make such a demand when the Parliament of Canada did not? Making these women show their faces serves no purpose whatsoever under current elections law as their is nothing requiring these women to provide anything to compare their faces to!

Parliamentarians can pretend all they like that this huge gap in our election law is somehow Elections Canada's fault. However, all Elections Canada is doing is following the law that Parliament passed. It's not their fault Parliament passed a bad law.