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To think they shouldn't be allowed to harass voters leaving the polling station

(97 Posts)
PatPig Thu 02-May-13 15:07:14

Went to vote earlier. The incumbent councillor was there (he's a twat) with about four others from his party. As each person came out they were asking for polling numbers.

I slipped in behind another woman when I was leaving so I wouldn't be hassled and have to struggle not to tell them to 'fuck off'. The woman said 'NO!' when asked for her polling number, and then they gave some BS excuse why it was needed, and I think she gave it to them.

Anyway, AIBU to think they should fuck right off from crowding the narrow entrance, chugger style, and harassing voters?

SlimFitWellies Thu 02-May-13 15:13:06

Oh, is that what they were asking for when we went out this morning?

I was a bit behind DH, and heard the incumbent (also a twat) mutter something and the half-heard Dh say 'tinpot council..... corruption..... Private Eye...' which mortified me. But, they did not bother us going in, which at the time I thought was strange.

(edited to add that Dh loves a bit of stirring.)

hufflebottom Thu 02-May-13 15:16:50

they did that to me. My reply was 'oh is it polling day, no one told me...oh i only went to use the toilets'

very confused idiot with a clipboard.

It's really annoying. YANBU

PatPig Thu 02-May-13 15:20:51

They are called tellers, and basically they tick your name off a list so they know if you've voted. There's not supposed to be (according to guidance rather than any law) more than one per party, but that didn't seem to be the case to me.

PeterParkerSays Thu 02-May-13 15:22:51

I got asked on the way in, I think it's only so they can see who bothers to turn out to vote. In general elections, the candidates can then go door knocking on those doors where people haven't voted and leave alone the people who have.

What was the BS reason they gave why it was needed? It's not like they can in any way influence how you voted.

PeterParkerSays Thu 02-May-13 15:23:40

We had just one per party, they had matching red or blue rosettes. Very fetching.

PatPig Thu 02-May-13 15:24:45

I didn't really hear, but the woman said no, and that should have been that.

SlimFitWellies Thu 02-May-13 15:26:18

we had one per party too. Blue and Purple rosette. What a choice. hmm

KoreRenati Thu 02-May-13 15:37:39

I was wondering why I got asked for my number on the way in and then got ticked off once I actually got my ballot paper. Wonder which party the woman was from, didn't see any rosettes?

EuroShaggleton Thu 02-May-13 15:42:37

I always refuse to give them my number. Voting in this country is anonymous. It's none of their bloody business whether or not I chose to vote.

One harangued me whining that it was so they wouldn't hassle me by door knocking later. What they mean is that they don't want to waste time doorstepping people who have voted. That's their problem, not mine.

they are only allowed to approach you on the way out of the polling station, and giving them your details is optional. if they cause a problem you should complain to the presiding officer of the polling station.

as peter says they want to make sure all of their supporters have been out to vote, so they can knock on the doors of any who haven't.

Dawndonna Thu 02-May-13 15:51:31

I don't understand what the problem is.
1) It really is to avoid disturbing you later.
2) It is a private ballot, having said that, whilst nobody knows what you voted last time, they do know whether or not you voted. Giving them your number at the polling station doesn't give them an indication of that, but the returning officer crossing off your name and number when they give you your ballot paper does.

Dawndonna Thu 02-May-13 15:52:44

There is a theory that it's only the Tories that won't give out their numbers, it's never been proven! grin

Chopchopbusybusy Thu 02-May-13 15:54:33

Is that right mrsbugsy? I got asked for my number this morning on the way in. I was in a very bad mood and when the woman asked me I just said no and carried on my way. If she's not supposed to ask on the way in I've a good mind to pop up again later when DH goes to vote.

ConferencePear Thu 02-May-13 15:55:55

You don't have to answer. It's none of their business.

ConferencePear Thu 02-May-13 15:56:42

You don't have to answer. It's none of their business.

MiaowTheCat Thu 02-May-13 16:40:05

I usually just say "sorry I don't want to give you that information" and it's fine (quite often end up having a chat with them anyway).

Disappointingly not door knocked by any of the candidates round here - since there's one big issue I'd like to have raised with them (since the sitting councillors ignore emails totally) - bah!

Pyrrah Thu 02-May-13 16:46:50

You don't need to give them the number, but having done telling a gazillion times, it does actually save you potential hassle later.

No-one sits and analyses who did or didn't vote. Some kid is sitting in an office ticking them off by number (don't even look at names) so that those on the phone banks or 'knocking up' don't hassle people who have already voted - or so that they can check if party members/supporters have gone out to vote yet (and offer them a lift to the polling station if they haven't).

No-one is checking up on you, or wanting to know who you voted for - although always nice to be told. The pieces of paper go in the bin at the end of the day.

Never minded people saying they didn't want to, but some people are incredibly rude.

Pyrrah Thu 02-May-13 16:48:33

Oh and you can have more than one person - generally one or two people are telling (clipboards and rosettes only) and the others will hand out literature etc. Tellers can't hand out literature.

JamieandtheMagicTorch Thu 02-May-13 16:53:59

Sorry, I don't see how being asked one question is "being harrassed"

sorry I have checked and I was wrong blush apparently they can approach voters on the way in. my memory must have faded since I was a poll clerk a few years ago

there is information about what tellers are allowed to do here

JamieandtheMagicTorch Thu 02-May-13 16:57:27

And OP, you sound like you were just in a bit of a bad mood

ATJabberwocky Thu 02-May-13 17:04:07

OP you do seem to be in a bad mood, just say no and leave it at that.

I didn't even realise the tick against your name meant anything, but I don't get councillors knocking door-to-door, only the odd leaflet.

specialsubject Thu 02-May-13 17:05:45

to think that there are countries where you can get shot for trying to vote...

musicmadness Thu 02-May-13 17:12:27

There's no one outside mine, I just got back. Do they only turn up outside certain polling stations? I've never seen anyone asking anything after I've voted confused

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