The World’s Most Complicated Single-Day Election Is a Feat of Democracy


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The task of holding free and fair elections in a single day across a vast and diverse geographic expanse might seem to be merely procedural, yet it is crucial to the functioning of a democracy. It is a logistical feat that illustrates many of the oft-hidden processes that, beyond the simple act of casting ballots, underpin democratic societies. And it is one that Indonesia’s.)

Burdened by a long history of military rule, and an abortive attempt at electoral democracy in the 1950s, Indonesia’s voting system has been designed to make it hard to steal elections. The key to curbing manipulation is the large number of polling stations, each of which caters to only a few hundred voters, as well as the fact that initial counting takes place in the open.