Religion Magazine

Should Israeli Expats Be Allowed to Vote Absentee?

By Gldmeier @gldmeier

Here is a news report about an organization run by, and for, Israeli expats. The organization is in the process of being formed and their goal is to liaise with the State of Israel on behalf of Israeli expats, help them keep a connection to the State, get fundnig for educational programs to keep the kids connected, etc.
I enjoyed watching how the new report tried to focus on one issue - the possibility of absentee voting for Israelis abroad.
Currently, Israelis residing abroad cannot vote in their host countries, except for a few exceptions of those living abroad in service of the State. Any random Israeli that wants to vote in Israeli elections must travel to Israel to do so.
According to the report, this organization is supposedly demanding, or pushing for, a change in the law to allow Israeli expats to vote absentee. The reporters keep asking about it even though the representatives say they have never requested such a thing, and the organization has, at this time, no opinion on the matter - the members are as of now divided on the issue.

Personally, I think there should be no absentee voting. They chose not to live here, even though they do remian somewhat connected to the State, and they don't pay taxes to the State of Israel. Why should they have the right to affect the lives of those of us living here? If they want to, they can travel to Israel for the elections. If they are willing to pay the cost of a visit, they are citizens and can vote. I assume the cost of a trip will deter many of them. Voting just is not that important for most people.
I do vote absentee in US elections. USA expats have to file taxes in the USA, so we are affected, but that is not why I vote. I vote absentee because the law allows me to. I happen to think the law should probably be changed, but as long as the law allows it, I have no problem voting.
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