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why indonesia calls its elections a democracy party
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Why Indonesia Calls Its Elections a ‘Democracy Party’

The young women and men moved from booth to booth, asking questions about the political hopefuls’ track records and visions for the country. A few steps away, first-time voters practiced casting their ballots in pretend voting booths. And onstage, talk show guests discussed how to make an informed choice in backing a candidate. This gathering of more than a thousand people one recent Sunday in Jakarta, the capital of Indonesia, was a prelude to a celebration that is widely known here as “Pesta Demokrasi,” or Democracy Party. Otherwise known as Election Day, it’s when tens of millions of people across this vast archipelago of thousands of islands head to polling stations that are sometimes decorated with balloons, garlands and flowers, and manned by officials dressed up as Spider-Man, Batman, Thor or other superheroes. After voting for presidential, parliamentary and local legislative candidates, people camp out near their polling places with food as they wait for early counts to trickle in. The next “party” is on Wednesday.

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