I’ve been deliberately pretending not to notice the national elections (the somewhat conservative Norwegian paper Aftenposten has an English edition if you’re curious), because, well, I can’t vote though I’ve lived here for 25 years, no, I can’t vote unless I give up that possibility of maybe moving back to Australia one day. And if you’ve ever been in a situation where you have to choose between citizenships you know how hard that choice is. Especially knowing that more than half the countries in the world — including Australia, heck, including Sweden, Norway’s neighbour — are fine with dual citizenship, and, oh, also that there are tens of thousands of dual citizens in Norway anyway because a Norwegian citizen can be granted, say, Australian citizenship without any quibbles and keep both.

Not being a citizen of the country where I live is fine except on election day. And this year, amazingly the labour party and the socialist left are cooperating! Can you imagine!? So the traditional left majority in parliament might actually translate to a left wing government, instead of failed cooperation and a right/centre minority coalition!

Not that it’ll necessarily make much difference — which seems to be what people on buses explaining to their neighbours say is why they won’t vote.

But still: as Martin says: if you can, VOTE! Please. If nothing else just because I can’t. You have a few more hours left.

7 thoughts on “election day

  1. Simon

    Yep. Not having a vote sucks. But at least I get to gripe that there is no government on the face of the earth that represents me (I lost the vote in the UK, too, having not voted in the last election before leaving the country).

    I agree about the citizenship thing, too. If I could have both, there’s be no problem; but having to give up my country of birth? I think I’m not as rational as I would like to think I am.

  2. Martin

    Here’s crossing our fingers. It’s going to be a long night.

    I can’t vote either. I’m a Danish citizen, but I can’t even vote in Denmark. I think I’m going to be changing my citizenship for the next election. I watched my girlfriend voting today, and it still feels like not being invited to the birthday party.

  3. Martin

    Silly me! I said that already in my post. I forgot. Heh.

  4. Jill

    Not represented by any government, yeah, that’s me too – there are quite a lot of us, really, aren’t there… And no, of course I can’t vote in Australia. I could if I moved back and lived there for two consecutive months before an election, I think. I did, once, when I was 18. It was great. In Australia, did you know, they have this neat system called preferential voting, I think, where you can vote for lots of parties. So, for instance: well, my first priority would be the greens, you know. If they don’t get the majority, I’d like my vote to go to the marihuana party (yes there was one). Oh they didn’t get the majority? OK, then, Labour. Perhaps this was just the Perth deal, I can’t even remember if it was a national election I voted in or just state elections.

    Ah well. At least I can vote in my local elections. That’s better than nothing.

    Not being invited to the birthday party indeed 🙂

  5. Martin

    The scoop: Bondevik is out, Stoltenberg is in. The government is strong labour, and weak
    socialist left – much weaker than expected. The “Progress”-party had their best election ever, due mainly to the fact that the right wing and the christian democrats had a lousy election. Carl I Hagen couldn’t stop smiling all night long. Not a perfect victory, but at least we’re in
    business. We’ll see what happens tomorrow morning.

  6. Liz

    I didn’t realize you couldn’t keep your citizenship while moving to Norway. That is really discriminating as one can live overseas for a long time and still vote in the elections. I know at least in Victoria (Oz) there is really only three parties to vote for. But I think Australias system which makes it an offense not to vote is interesting.
    It sucks not being able to vote in the country where you spend most of your time. There are organisations that wants everyone to have one passport, so-called transnational organisations. Not sure if that will work though.

    Anyways, terrific with a change in government!

  7. Jill

    You can keep your own citizenship and move to Norway (if you get a visa), but if you after seven years want to become a Norwegian citizen, you have to give up your original citizenship. Whether or not you can vote in your home country depends on the rules of your home country. They recently changed the rules in Australia so you can vote for longer, living overseas, but I’m not eligible. Something to do with having lived abroad for more than three years before they changed the rules. The Southern Cross Group has excellent information for ex-pay Australians.

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