Fri Apr 24th, 2009 at 08:43:10 AM EST
What is European about these elections? That's a question the newropeans party has already asked here on the European Tribune. It's a hard one to answer, but certainly, the fact that as an EU citizen, you can vote in any EU country you live in is a major European element of the elections.
Of course you do have to register to vote. And the deadline for that is different, everywhere.
For instance, I will be voting in Germany as I blissfully let the deadline for voting in the Netherlands expire. The municipality of The Hague would have required my form by last Wednesday. Not that the Dutch government goes to any trouble to contact me here in Berlin, or to contact any other expats, anywhere. They have put up a site (nl) on the internets that you can find if you look for it, and have otherwise determined that contacting expats is not cost-efficient. Even though the value of a vote apparently is 3700 Euros in the Netherlands (that being the maximum penalty you pay for voting in multiple EU states).
Fortunately, I should be able to vote in Germany. The deadline for registering here is May 17th. And the electoral official was kind enough to send me a letter with the information, including the fact that I should not have to register again, as I already voted in Germany in the 2004 European elections.
For any other internal European expats, your deadlines for registering in your country of residence can be found on the milkshaker.eu website of the European Journalism Centre. There is still (very short!) time if you live in the Czech Republic (up to Sunday), Denmark, Estonia, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Latvia, Lithuania, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden and the UK.