Boris is fighting with Wales and Scotland to make it illegal for British citizens to vote in elections without identification.


Boris is fighting with Wales and Scotland to make it illegal for British citizens to vote in elections without identification.

A CONFLICT has emerged when Scotland and Wales refused to agree to a law that would prevent persons without identification from voting in some elections.

The UK Government’s Elections Bill, which would take effect in September 2022, has been blasted by SNP ministers in Holyrood and Labour leaders in Cardiff. On behalf of the SNP-led Scottish Government, John Swinney, Scotland’s Deputy First Minister, filed a legislative consent memorandum in the Scottish Parliament on Friday.

“The Scottish Government believes there is no evidence of widespread election fraud in Scotland to justify voter ID legislation,” he stated.

Mr Swinney emphasized that it would cause confusion because voters in Scotland would be required to produce picture identification for UK general elections but not for Holyrood-related elections.

Following a memorandum from Welsh ministers, the Welsh Senedd has likewise declined to agree to the bill.

Wales’ Counsel General, Mick Antoniw, said the Welsh Government was also seeking for changes to the Act.

“The Welsh Government opposes the implementation of voter ID, the imposition of unjustified restrictions on postal and proxy voting, and the extension of the foreign franchise,” he continued.

“We are pleased that the Bill excludes Wales from these provisions, but we are concerned about unforeseen consequences such as voter and candidate misunderstanding, as well as administrative complexity.”

UK Parliament bills require legislative consent from the devolved authorities.

Consent is rarely refused, thus the Scottish and Welsh Parliaments’ actions are exceedingly unusual.

“The Elections Bill is not only a flawed piece of legislation, but a dangerous one – it’s a bill that proposes huge changes to our democracy that might see thousands of Scots pushed away from the vote box,” said Willie Sullivan, Senior Director of the Electoral Reform Society Scotland.

“There is plenty that can be done to improve our elections across the UK, but this legislation, rather than addressing the underlying concerns, will jeopardize free and fair elections in Scotland.”

“The Holyrood Government is correct in opposing it and should continue to do so.

“Rather than preserving the integrity of our elections, it serves as a costly impediment to democracy.”

“This Elections Bill will create a ‘two-tier franchise’ in Scotland, with some elections prohibiting individuals without identification, while others will remain open and free.”

“Stealing someone’s vote is stealing their voice, and fraud in our elections is something we cannot allow,” a Cabinet Office spokesperson stated.


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