Sunday, August 10, 2003

Vote and win!

Via Edward of VoteLaw:

Osterloh's Voter Reward Initiative would give one randomly drawn voter a $1 million lottery prize, including one in the 2004 election if the initiative passed. Later, voters would get two chances at the prize, one in the primary and one in the general, a carrot that Osterloh predicts will push voter turnout past 90 percent.
OSTERLOH: The Voter Reward Initiative, I have been thinking about that for a couple of years. It's basically a question of what do we do to get voter participation up where it needs to be. People don't vote, they don't realize how important it is, and they are not being taken care of by their government because they don't vote and they are not listened to. I've seen get-out-the vote campaigns that spend a lot of time and an incredible amount of money, and they don't work. So I was thinking, and it came to me: Motivate people to do it. If you reward people for doing their patriotic duty, if you make them want to go to the polls, it would be so much easier. Why not have a system where if you vote, you have a chance to get rich?
OSTERLOH: The only difference between what we would be doing here and what they do in Australia is, there they use a stick, they beat you over the head. Here we'd encourage you. It's not a joke. Once you get the people to the polls, they're going to look at the candidates and they are going to look at the issues, and they are going to vote for those people who are going take care of the needs they consider important. But you need to get them to the polls.

I doubt this would work in Georgia, what with our many lotteries, but it's a neat idea, anyway.