Yom Kippur! What a day for an election!

You can really see the hand of Foreign Minister Bob Carr in setting the date for the coming Federal Election. How about the holiest day in the Jewish calendar? Well, that’s what the Prime Minister of Australia has done. It shows how little respect she has for the Jewish community.

I bet that she would not have dared to choose the most holy day for Muslims to hold an election.

p.s When a Jewish member of parliament queried the selection of the date on Judaism’s holiest day, Julia Gillard said that it was hard to choose a date because of some international commitments and, wait for it…Football finals. She chose football over franchise.

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4 thoughts on “Yom Kippur! What a day for an election!

  1. The franchise? Voting is compulsory and postal voting is easy, especially with seven months notice. Anyway, Orthodox jews can never vote on Saturdays, so what does it matter if the election’s on Yom Kippur?

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  2. What you don’t understand is that if voting has to be done early then this prevents those voters being informed up till the last minute. Kevin Rudd did the same things when he set up the Best and Brightest Conference and none of the Orthodox Jews could participate.
    By the way, this is not just a case of keeping the Sabbath. You don’t have to be orthodox to go to the synagogue on Yom Kippur.

    Anyway, my point that Gillard would not disrespect Muslims in this way still stands.

    If it makes no difference then why can’t the election be on a Sunday? Oh, that’s right, the Christian Church would not like it.

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  3. So, the disenfranchising you’re worried about is of (a) non-Orthodox jews who don’t keep Shabat; but (b) who nevertheless go to Shul each and every Yom Kippur; (c) from 8am to 6pm; and (d) are swing voters; (e) who remain swing voters for every single day of a 7 month campaign? How dare Julia not factor them in?

    Would Gillard ‘disrespect Muslims in this way’? She’s only ever called one other election date. That was on 21st August 2010, right in the middle of Ramadan. (Apparently, such elections were an issue for Muslims in Israel in 2012: http://www.timesofisrael.com/religious-arab-mk-furious-over-election-date/. I don’t recall similar complaints here, though.)

    Saturday elections are required by s158 of the Commonwealth Electoral Act. That rule was enacted in 1918. Pro-Christian? Almost certainly. Anti-jewish (and 7th day adventist?) Maybe. But pro-Muslim? In 1918?

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  4. Jeremy, it’s a question of perception. After all, as she said herself, she had all the time in the world to select a date this year. It’s not as if she had no choice!

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