Ballot boxes by helicopter…yes it's politics Irish-style

As the years pass, I seem to be developing a taste for vicarious politics. That is, enjoying following politics in other countries. It has none of the direct involvement that can get one down in one’s own country. It is strangely liberating.

I will be writing shortly about the main subject of my second-hand political enjoyment. But vicarious pleasure number two is Ireland. Goodness, how I love Ireland and the Irish. They get so involved with their politics!

Occasionally, I feel like a shot of RTE Radio One on long wave. This morning was one of those times. An Irish friend of mine said “Weren’t you depressed enough?” But this story caught my ear.

On Saturday, Irish voters go to the polls to decide whether to put childrens’ rights into the constitution. In the islands of Donegal they are needing special help so their vote is included:

Residents of 12 islands around Ireland are voting in the Children’s Referendum ahead of the main vote on Saturday.
Islanders off the coasts of Donegal, Mayo and Galway traditionally vote ahead of the mainland to make sure bad weather does not hamper the return of boxes on time for the count.
The Aer Corps brought the ballot box by helicopter to Tory Island, while ferries and boats transported the boxes to other islands.
Turnout on the Aran Islands is reported as being very low, with only 15.2% having voted on Inis Mór.
On Inis Meáin, 12.4% have cast their votes on, while it is marginally higher on Inis Óirr where 22% have voted.
Voting on Clare Island is also very slow, where only 33% of the electorate has turned out to cast their ballots. Reports from Inisturk say that that over 50% of the islanders on the register have cast their votes.

Yes, that’s right, a defence services helicopter is involved in the operation for the Donegal islands. Also, all sorts of calculations have had to be made about ferries and tide times.

Marvellous! This is quite an escape for me! Excellent.


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