Should politicians vote the way their electorate did?

Celebration: Same-sex marriage supporters celebrate after the postal survey result was handed down on Wednesday. Picture: Chris Hopkins
Celebration: Same-sex marriage supporters celebrate after the postal survey result was handed down on Wednesday. Picture: Chris Hopkins

I am repeatedly amazed at the arrogance of politicians to ignore the wishes of their constituents.  

The issue of same-sex marriage as reported in the Leader (November 22) is a case in point.  The final count of the plebiscite showed the Shire voted “Yes”, and two electorates in the St George area voted “No”.  

However, at least one of the politicians from St George, Barton’s Linda Burney, is quoted in the article to say she intends to vote “Yes” in the final parliamentary vote, in direct opposition to the wishes of her electorate. 

Is it only me, or does anyone else think this is wrong?

I personally voted “Yes” in the plebiscite, so this is not sour grapes.  This is about politicians doing the right thing. 

And the right thing in this case is to vote the way your electorate did.  That is how you represent the people. 

If all politicians voted according to their electorate’s wishes then the overall result would still end up “Yes” but each community would have had a chance to voice their opinion.  

Burney’s actions are unilaterally removing the people’s voice in their own government.

The same thing has also happened with the failure of the Voluntary Assisted Dying Bill in the NSW parliament last week.

Although there was no plebiscite on that issue, consistent community surveys over the last 20 years have shown public support is up to 85% in favour of this legal amendment.

But politicians from the major parties again ignored their responsibilities to their electorates and voted the bill down.  Their actions treat us with contempt.

Politicians beware. It is a privilege to represent your community.  Do not abuse it.  There is mood to vote in new parliamentarians who actually represent us.

Russell Hanna, Como