secret ballot

A secret ballot is the most basic political privacy guarantee. It is one of the basic and best practices of proven stable democracies. Allowing citizens to keep who they voted for secret reduced the ability of others to intimidate or punish voters on the basis of who they voted for. However, the use of anonymous ballots make electoral fraud easier, and also make it more difficult to discover correlations between tolerances or preferences of voters.

Secret ballots are usually used only in general elections, plebecites or referendums. Secret ballots are not used in the legislature, in part because of the requirements fo party dicipline and partly because constituents have a right to know how their representative has cast his/her vote.

see: democracy, electoral reform,