People’s Right to Vote
I propose the Government amends the Representation of The People Acts of 1983 (and 2000), following the turning away of the voters from Polling Stations in May 2010 and the subsequent report by the Electoral Commision on 20th May 2010. The changes which need to be made are:
– amend the relevant rules for all elections in the UK to make clear that any elector who is entitled to vote at a polling station and who is in the queue to enter the polling station at the
close of poll will be allowed to vote.
– the process for Electoral Administration need to be simplified and 'ceremonial' positions need to be removed, including the creation of a Chief Electoral Officer (as in Northern Ireland) for England and Wales. I would also ask the devolved Scottish Parliament to look at removing complexity.
I would also urge the Government to investigate options for Advance Polling, as used in Australia, Canada, Germany et al, to see if these could benefit the UK Electoral System.
Why does this idea matter?
It is vital that the electorate are able to express their democratic right. Approximately 1200 were turned away from 27 polling stations in May 2010, despite being their a long time prior to closing, and therefore lost their right to vote. There was much confusion about the processes applicable.