Definition of vote noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//vəʊt//
    ; NAmE NAmE//voʊt//
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  1. 1  [countable] vote (for/against somebody/something) a formal choice that you make in an election or at a meeting in order to choose somebody or decide something There were 21 votes for and 17 against the motion, with 2 abstentions. The motion was passed by 6 votes to 3. The chairperson has the casting/deciding vote. The Green candidate won over 3 000 of the 14 000 votes cast. Wordfinderargument, ayes, chair, debate, the floor, motion, propose, second, speak, vote CultureelectionsIn Britain, a general election takes place at least every five years, when the electorate (= all the people in the country who can vote) vote for the Members of Parliament or MPs in the House of Commons. Each MP represents a constituency, which is an area of the country with a roughly equal number of people (about 90 000 people) and is expected to be interested in the affairs of the constituency and to represent the interests of local people. If an MP dies or resigns, a by-election is held in the constituency he or she represented. Before an election one person is chosen by each of the main political parties to be their candidate. Independent candidates, who do not belong to a political party, can also stand for election. Each candidate has to leave a deposit with the returning officer, the person responsible for managing the election, which is returned to them if they win more than 5% of the votes, otherwise they lose their deposit. Before an election, candidates campaign for support in their constituency and local party workers spend their time canvassing, going from house to house to ask people about how they intend to vote. At the national level the parties spend a lot of money on advertising and media coverage. They cannot buy television time, but each party is allowed a number of strictly timed party political broadcasts.Anyone over the age of 18 has the right to vote at elections, provided they are on the electoral register (= list of adults in a constituency). Voting is not compulsory. The turnout (= number of people who vote) in recent general elections has been about 60%, although in the past 75% was more usual. On the day of the election, called polling day, voters go to a polling station, often in a local school or church hall, and are given a ballot paper. The ballot paper lists all the candidates for that constituency and the parties they represent. The voter goes into a polling booth, where nobody can see what he or she is writing, and puts a cross next to the name of one candidate only. After the polls close, the ballot papers are taken to a central place to be counted. Counting usually takes place on the same day as the election, continuing late into the night if necessary. If the number of votes for two candidates is very close, they can demand a recount. Only the candidate who gets the most votes in each constituency is elected. This system is called first-past-the-post. The winning party, which forms the next government, is the one that wins most seats in Parliament (= has the most MPs).In the US, elections are held regularly for President, for both houses of Congress and for state and local government offices. Candidates usually run for office with the support of one of the two main political parties, the Republican Party or the Democratic Party, although anyone wanting to run as an independent can organize a petition and ask people to sign it. Some people also run as write-in candidates: they ask voters to add their name to the ballot when they vote. A large amount of money is spent on election campaigning, where candidates try to achieve name recognition (= making their names widely known) by advertising on television, in newspapers and on posters. They take part in debates and hold rallies where they give speeches and go round'pressing the flesh', shaking hands with as many voters as possible.Only a person over 35 who was born in the US can run for President. Presidential elections are held every four years and early in election year, the political parties choose their candidates through a series of primary elections held in each state. As these races take place it gradually becomes clear which candidates are the strongest and in the summer each party holds a convention to make the final choice of candidates for President and Vice-President. In November, the people go to vote and although the President is said to be directly elected, the official vote is made by an electoral college. Each state has a certain number of electors in the college based on the state's population. All the electors from a state must vote for the candidate who got the most votes in the state, and the candidate with at least 270 votes out of 538 becomes President. After the election, the new President goes to Washington for the inauguration on 20 January, and takes the oath of office.Americans over the age of 18 have the right to vote, but only about half of them take part in presidential elections and voter turnout for other elections is even lower. On election day, voters go to polling stations where they first have to sign their name in a book that lists all the voters in the precinct (= area) and then cast a vote. Some states use computerized voting systems and in others voters pull down a metal lever beside the name of the person they want to vote for which operates a mechanical counter. It is possible to select all the candidates from one party, which is called voting a straight ticket, but many voters choose candidates from both parties and vote a split ticket. Journalists and pollsters are allowed to ask people how they voted and these exit polls help to predict election results. However, the results of exit polls may not be announced until polling stations everywhere have closed, in case they influence the result. See related entries: Elections
  2. 2  [countable] vote (on something) an occasion when a group of people vote on something to have/take a vote on an issue The issue was put to the vote. The vote was unanimous. Synonymselectionvote poll referendum ballotThese are all words for an event in which people choose a representative or decide something by voting.election an occasion on which people officially choose a political representative or government by voting:Who did you vote for in the last election?vote an occasion on which a group of people vote for somebody/​something:They took a vote on who should go first.poll (journalism) the process of voting in an election:They suffered a defeat at the polls.referendum an occasion on which all the adults in a country can vote on a particular issueballot the system of voting by marking an election paper, especially in secret; an occasion on which a vote is held:The leader will be chosen by secret ballot. Ballot is usually used about a vote within an organization rather than an occasion on which the public vote.Patterns a national/​local election/​vote/​poll/​referendum/​ballot to have/​hold/​conduct a(n) election/​vote/​poll/​referendum/​ballot
  3. 3  the vote [singular] the total number of votes in an election She obtained 40% of the vote. The party increased their share of the vote.
  4. 4  the vote [singular] the vote given by a particular group of people, or for a particular party, etc. the student vote the Labour vote
  5. 5  the vote [singular] the right to vote, especially in political elections In Britain and the US, people get the vote at 18. see also block vote Wordfinderact, bill, chamber, coalition, election, law, legislation, parliament, politician, vote
  6. Word Originlate Middle English: from Latin votum ‘a vow, wish’, from vovere ‘to vow’. The verb dates from the mid 16th cent.Extra examples A special vote of thanks went to the organizer, Tim Woodhouse. Any senator can force a vote on virtually any proposal. Bush had courted the military vote. Everyone’s vote counts. Ferrer got 84% of the Hispanic vote. He lost the election because of the protest vote. He won the seat thanks to Polish block votes. How many years is it since women have had the vote? Let’s take a vote on the issue. Members are elected by direct vote. Members of Parliament will have a free vote on this bill. Mr Olsen was approved by a vote of 51–47. My vote will go to the party that addresses crime. Our candidate polled only 10% of the vote. The bill was passed by a single vote. The chairperson always has the casting vote. The government received a massive vote of confidence from the electorate. The law was ratified by popular vote. The party’s vote fell by 6%. The single transferable vote system operates. The union wants the system of block votes to continue. They want to persuade voters to change their vote. Votes are still being counted. We should put the resolution to the vote. We took a quick vote to decide on a leader. You can cast your vote at the local polling station. a vote for the government a vote on the new law an overwhelming vote in favour of autonomy factors that could swing the vote against the president the party that split the Republican vote I think it’s time to put this issue to the vote. Let me propose a vote of thanks. They held a vote of no confidence in the government. They took a vote on who should be their new leader. When will we know the outcome of the vote?
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: vote