MPs reject prisoner votes plan

  hssutton 20:29 10 Feb 2011

MPs backed a motion opposing the move by a 234 to 22 - a majority of 212. click here

I'm in full agreement with the majority decision, but where were the rest of the 649 MPs on this very important vote which could potentially cost this country a great deal of money.

  natdoor 21:02 10 Feb 2011

The argument put forward by Davies and others is that persons sent to prison, having disobeyed the law, should not be able to make the law. Leaving aside the fact that it is unlikely that prisoners votes would alter an election result, and that it is even more unlikely that they would result in a different party gaining power, they immediately regain their right to vote on leaving prison. But they are still people who disobeyed the law but can now "make it". There is little or no logic in their position.

  ams4127 21:18 10 Feb 2011

One vaguely wonders just how many prisoners would want to vote.

  WhiteTruckMan 21:34 10 Feb 2011

if prisoners were to get the vote, it would be interesting to see who would stoop so low as to chase their votes.


  Forum Editor 22:57 10 Feb 2011

that in the whole time he was Home Secretary, and later Justice Secretary, neither he nor any member of his team received a single letter from a prison inmate asking for the right to vote, and at no time was he informed of any prisoner asking for the vote.

This whole charade - for that's what it is - has been cooked up by a few lawyers in Brussels, and is now being seen as a lucrative gravy train by a few lawyers in this country. The government wanted to test the political water to see if what it thought was true was in fact correct - that the majority of MPs don't want prison inmates to have the vote, and they don't want Brussels telling them it must happen.

History hasn't been made by this vote; it is - as fourm member has said - a vote that proves nothing that most of us didn't already know.

What comes next is going to be the important part. Regardless of today's events in the House some prisoners will get the vote - those who are serving less than a year in prison. That policy will undoubtedly be challenged in court, and the end result could be that the government has to pay out millions in taxpayers' money by way of compensation.

Aside from ourselves, there are only nine other European countries who currently deny all prisoners the vote. In my view that makes nine other countries which have as much sense as we do.

  Forum Editor 22:59 10 Feb 2011

"it would be interesting to see who would stoop so low as to chase their votes."

There will be queues outside the prison gates.

  smartpoly 22:59 10 Feb 2011

Let’s do some maths (hypothetically) current prison population approx 85000.

The very nature of a person of criminal intent to the extent that they are incarcerated reduces the chances that they were on the electoral role at the last general election by say 50%.

Those that were eligible to vote were by nature not the upstanding pillars of community who would exercise their right to vote so lets half that.

2010 turnout was 65%

8500/2= 4250

So given variables & estimates, if inmates had the right to vote at the last general election I would guess that there would have been no more than a couple of thousand votes from behind walls. Split between 3 major parties I don’t think it would have made any difference.

My opinion is that once you break the law you must loose certain rights, including the right to vote.

Please don’t lambaste my figures they are purely speculative but conceivable.

  jakimo 01:17 11 Feb 2011

Its not hypothetical that that the vote will change anything,we cant cherry pick what laws we want to abide too

  dororof 01:49 11 Feb 2011

"All for one and one for all".
AS Jamkino states,we are "in this together" or not at all.
The European "superstate" began when the signatures of the various parties involved put ink to paper.
If they did not like what they signed they should have read the smallprint.
Politicians are paid to protect the intrests of the people<an icon here would be nice<,so DEMOCRACY says.
My question is,
What is the difference ===

  morddwyd 08:57 11 Feb 2011

Any large prisons in marginal seats?

If all the prisoners have the prison as their registered address they could swing the result.

That would really set the cat among the pigeons, particularly in a hung or low majority parliament like the current one!

  Quickbeam 10:37 11 Feb 2011

I really don't get where the human rights bit comes in for convicted criminals.
In putting someone behind bars, fitting curfew tags or requiring community work we are state sanctioning a restriction on the right to be free, and to be out and about as we please. With fines we are state sanctioning the right to spend as we please.

What is wrong with accepting that as a convicted criminal, not having the vote is just another part of what you lose compared to a free law abiding citizen with full human rights?

All court sentences are a restriction to full human rights in one way or another. Just accept it.

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