Joke Maneuvering

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Joke Maneuvering is a Talossa political ploy, in which a political party is registered in order to take advantage of a humorous joking vote, a mistaken vote, or a protest vote in a Cosa election. It first occurred in 1992/XIII when Dan Lorentz and Josh Macht registered the Mickey Mouse Movement after a citizen voted (mockingly) for Mickey Mouse, the popular Disney icon.

Later, in the elections to the 33rd Cosa, King Ben registered the None Party for the same purpose. In this case, the action was seen as further aggravating to the extremely tense political situation at the time. This is because the voter who had voted "None" on the ballot had done so in explicit protest against King Ben and his tactics, so for Ben to proceed to claim the vote by registering the "None Party" was considered by most on both sides of the dispute to be akin to pouring oil on a grease-fire. The action contributed to the build-up to the schism that founded the Republic of Talossa.

Since that event, this tactic has been consistently frowned upon, and with the establishment of a registration fee for national parties, Joke Maneuvering has also become prohibitively expensive. The closest parallel occurred in the elections to the 39th Cosa, when Mick Preston, a member of the RUMP, voted for the LRT (which had declared itself disbanded, but had received votes in the election) and then registered that party. Preston, however, did so not to claim the votes for any politically opposition, but rather to allow the voters who had chosen LRT to be represented in the Cosa immediately (rather than wait the requisite one Clark before the seats would be filled by royal appointment).

At election time, it is a common joke that one might register the "PRESENT" party to claim the votes of all who return a ballot without a choice of party, but simply to avoid a "strike" against their citizenship by reporting "PRESENT". While technically not illegal to attempt such a thing, it is commonly presumed that a judicial action would quickly invalidate any such attempt to claim those as partisan votes.