Definition of Secret Ballot

What is meant by the term "secret ballot"? What does the term "secret ballot" mean?

A "secret ballot" occurs when a voter's choice in an election is kept anonymous. The "secret ballot" helps to prevent election fraud and various forms of intimidation. For instance, in a country with a powerful and violent leader, voters may face retribution if they vote for the opposition in anything other than a "secret ballot". This could easily lead to voters casting their ballots for the current leader out of sheer intimidation.

Definition of Secret Ballot - Elections - Financial DictionaryHere is how the "secret ballot" usually works:

1. Voters arrive at a local polling place.

2. Voters are "checked in" by volunteers. Voters are asked to show some sort of photo ID - this is done to prevent election fraud.

3. Voters are then directed to a table or booth where their actions are shielded from everyone else in the room.

4. Voters cast their votes on a piece of paper and then put their votes into a locked box. Their names are nowhere to be found on the votes that they just have cast.

By handling things in this fashion, votes are kept completely anonymous.

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