Almost voting time again: what is allowed and what is not?
In one week's time, we will go back into the voting booth and fill in the blanks with a red pencil. But why is that red pencil? And what else is allowed in the voting booth?
Voting from abroad
Dutch citizens abroad have to register once as a voter outside the Netherlands. After that, they receive a ballot paper and can send it with a copy of their valid Dutch passport or identity card to the postal vote office in The Hague or through the embassy. They can also vote by proxy. The votes must be received on 17 March at 15.00 Dutch time, so the envelope must be sent earlier.
Why the red pencil?
Previously, a black pencil was used, but as more and more candidates came forward, it became cluttered. Counters could not see the difference with all the other black letters. But it does not necessarily have to be a red pencil, it can also be a red pencil or pen. If you vote with a different colour, your vote is not valid.
No children in the voting booth
Only one person at a time can be in the voting booth, in connection with the secrecy of the vote. Therefore, children are not allowed in the voting booths. If you have children under the age of 3, you can ask the chairman of the polling station for permission to take them with you.
If you would like to take a photo of yourself and your ballot paper in the polling booth, you can. There was a lot of commotion about this in 2014, but taking a 'voting photo' is not prohibited.
You already know a bit more about the rules of elections, now you have to choose a party to vote for on 17 March.