Mantas Zakarka. Lithuanian youth organizations support an introduction of internet based voting.
NewsPublished on 2015-07-28

While louder and louder talking about imposing electronic voting in Lithuania, its pluses and minuses, as more than a half of Lithuanians support this initiative, Lithuanian youth council answers to the question whether we are ready for this kind of voting possibility.

Already in 2010 the biggest youth organizations in Lithuania adopted resolution in which was expressed their support for the introduction for this voting alternative. In 2015 spring organizations once again tried to encourage governmental institutions and society to pay more attention to the possibilities of internet based voting system by adopting a document regarding legitimization of electronic voting in presidential, parliamentary, municipality, mayors, European parliament elections and referendums.

According to them, elections in a country of a modern representative democracy are the most important mechanism for the legitimization of the government. Therefore, an inclusion of all citizens in Lithuania and abroad in elections is the main tool in order to ensure broader representation and a possibility to contribute to the creation and development of the country.

Already for a while discussions about the imposition of electronic voting as a way to involve a bigger part of young people and Lithuanians living abroad are present. Maybe it is time not only to talk but act as well? I am sure that this kind of voting alternative would encourage both people living in Lithuania and emigrants to participate more actively while making the most important country decisions, also would increase voting participation. In this way internet based voting not only would help to solve inconveniences related to geographical aspects but also would encourage bigger inclusion of expats.

The system of traditional voting for Lithuanians abroad provides possibility to vote by using post services in Lithuanian embassies or embassies of European Union countries and this composes main obstacles for emigrants who live far away from the biggest cities in order to vote in Lithuanian national elections and express their civic will.
Finally, internet voting would be a tool in creating the image of a modern country- would be used up to date, innovative methods, lots of peoples’ lives making easier and saving money of tax payers.

Of course, thinking about the possibility of introducing internet voting in Lithuania, it is necessary to have in mind security and put all possible efforts to maximally ensure it.
Let’s not forget that internet based voting would become just an alternative- no one would abolish an option of traditional voting. Hence, answering to the question whether we are ready for this alternative of traditional voting, the answer unambiguously would be yes.

We have to try and decide by ourselves whether this is acceptable to our society. There are things which are not “dzin” and elections encouraging responsibility of citizens in front of their country, are among them. Therefore, by all possible means we have to try to make voting system more comfortable and more attractive to all groups of the society.
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