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Should Poll Duty be like Jury Duty? [Archive] - DVD Talk Forum


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10-18-04, 09:52 AM
An interesting thought occured to me while listening to someone talk about how volunteers are down and it's hard to find people willing to work the polls. Should people be forced to work the polls occasionally just they are forced into jury duty? On the plus side it'll hopefully get people more involved/learn more about how the system really works, as well as solve the general problem of not having enough people ;) On the down side it's forcing people to do something they may have no interest in (which could lead to people intentionally or accidentally screwing up the tally), w/o some sort of veting process it's also allowing people access to personal info of those voting (which could potentially cause some problems as well). Just curious what people thought (plus it's conversation/debate we can have that is hopefully non-partisan ;)).

10-18-04, 09:55 AM
No, but I think they could offer better incentives to volunteers. For example, their votes count twice or something.

Spanky BananaPants
10-18-04, 01:26 PM
I was an election judge for the '92 election. I seem to remember getting paid $50 for it. Voter turnout was high, so we were busy pretty much all day. I was there from about 7am to well past midnight without a break. It sucked.

I don't regret doing it, but I feel that those who volunteer for poll duty should be compensated better for it. I checked, and now (in my area, at least) they pay $65. Not worth my time, really.

So, no...don't make it compulsory, but make it more attractive for those who do volunteer. Maybe free booze would work.

Red Dog
10-18-04, 01:28 PM
Where was that thread about how an independent couldn't work the polls?

10-18-04, 01:37 PM
Originally posted by Red Dog
Where was that thread about how an independent couldn't work the polls?
Yeah, I think in some state (or states), the rules are written such that only people registered with one of the parties can act as election judges -- so they can ensure an equal number of partisans running things in each precinct, effectively ensuring no partisanship at the polling place. Independents can't be counted on to expouse the party line (since they don't have one), so you don't know if they're a whacko-Liberal or a Conservative nut job, thus introducing an element of unwelcomed randomness into the precincts.

10-18-04, 03:51 PM
Na, we don't need to force people to work the polls. If anything, we should do our best to limit what anyone "has" to do. Sure it would educate people more, but coming up with more and more things people are supposed to do with regards to the state is hardly a good idea in my book, as is mandatory military service or any other myriad of govt mandated activities. The right to vote also means the right to not give a shit, regardless of how bad that sounds.

Anyway, like said before, you wouldn't want uninterested people running the polls, and are we really faced with a shortage anyway?

10-18-04, 03:53 PM
Ladies, working the pole shouldn't be a "duty," it should be a pleasure!

10-18-04, 04:03 PM
Originally posted by Groucho
Ladies, working the pole shouldn't be a "duty," it should be a pleasure!
If shutting your eyes and calling us "ladies" makes you feel less ashamed, be my guest.

(Seriously, has any female ever set foot in this forum?)

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