Voting is a method for a group such as a meeting or an electorate to make a decision or express an opinion often following discussions, debates, or election campaigns. Democracies elect holders of high office by voting. In a democracy, a government is chosen by voting in an election: a way for an electorate to elect, i.e. choose, among several candidates for rule.
In a representative democracy voting is the method by which the electorate appoints its representatives in its government. A vote is a formal expression of an individual's choice in voting, for or against some motion, for a certain candidate, a selection of candidates, or a political party. A secret ballot has come to be the practice to prevent voters from being intimidated and to protect their political privacy. Voting usually takes place at a polling station; it is voluntary in some countries, compulsory in others, such as Argentina, Australia, Belgium and Brazil.