GB ballot security worse than Kenya

  Al94 07:46 09 May 2010

according to The Times click here

I can scarcely believe what I'm reading here. So in GB, you just turn up and say who you are and vote? Unbelievable! I'm sure electoral fraud is rife and probably on a scale that distorts the outcome. The entire election should be declared void amd rerun with proper security procedures in place.

In Northern Ireland you cannot vote unless you produce photographic ID click here

This was introduced many years ago in an attempt to combat electoral fraud and had a significant impact on subsequent results.

I'd say this is long overdue throughout the UK.

  GANDALF <|:-)> 08:30 09 May 2010

I have never been asked for proof of identity and until recently, I kept getting voting forms for 2 people who I had never heard of.


  Quickbeam 08:47 09 May 2010

Who did you vote for on their behalf...?

  morddwyd 08:50 09 May 2010

This is a hangover from the widespread belief in general honesty.

Unfortunately it has no place in the modern world.

  michaelw 09:31 09 May 2010

In some way I can see where they're coming from. Here, you don't have to 'prove' your identity by way of id card or passport etc. But your name is already down on the electoral role and you're registered at the polling station. You don't get that in kenya or most African countries, mainly because their admin is not efficient and the power is extremely unreliable so computer admin is vertually non-existant.

It's a bit rich that Kenya is critising the UK when their voting was completely rigged. In their last election all over Kenya people were voting for Raila Odinga and not for the President Mwai Kibaki. Then when the results came through Kibaki had miraculously won. That's why there was nearly a civil war.

I do agree with the Africans that we should have another election because of the debacle of thousands being unable to vote. That was very undemocratic.

  bremner 10:45 09 May 2010

The main and overriding reason that people could not vote was because they turned up near the closing time of the polling stations. They all could not have been working from early morning to late evening.

The only real cause for concern was where the polling station actually ran out of ballot papers.

It should be remembered that every constiuencies where people were turned away returned a candidtae with a large majority.

I believe the suggestion to have another election is ridiculous and in any case won't happen.

We will be getting another election soon enough anyhow!!

  michaelw 11:45 09 May 2010

...I believe the suggestion to have another election is ridiculous and in any case won't happen....

You're probably right it won't happen. But why specifically do you think it's a ridiculous idea?

Here's a few other easons apart from running out of ballot papers:

There were also reports of polling stations distributing wrong papers and names of hundreds of people missing from the electoral rolls.

In Sheffield some constituents waited for three hours.

Several hundred Sheffield University students have now united in protest after long polling station queues were split into two, one for students and a ‘fast-track’ queue for local residents.

  bremner 11:55 09 May 2010

It is ridiculous because

1. It was a very small number of stations affecting a tiny number of the 45 million voters.

2. No result was affected by the people not voting.

3. The overriding reason was peoples laziness for not going to the polls earlier. The woman in Sheffield interviewed by the BBC had chosen not to queue at 6, 7 and 8 O'clock and the then returned at 9.15 and joined the queue.

4. It would be vast waste of millions and millions of pounds to have a new election.

Don't get me wrong we need to put new procedures in place to ensure some of the things don't happen in future. But you can't legislate for peoples laziness.

  michaelw 12:30 09 May 2010

...No result was affected by the people not voting...

I'm not sure that's true but it's difficult to assess.

...The overriding reason was peoples laziness for not going to the polls earlier. ...

I'm not sure it's laziness to still go out later. They still turned out.

...It would be vast waste of millions and millions of pounds to have a new election....

I think a few billions and billions have already been wasted. In fact quite a few millions were wiped of the share values due to there being a hung parliament. In fact if there was a deciding vote it would certainly make our nation a lot stronger financially and economically and give our much depleted moral a boost.

  jakimo 13:07 09 May 2010

According to a spokesperson from the organization who run the ballot voting system,who has appeared on the TV news programs several times,claims they have approached the government a number of times requesting changes in the balloting system,only to find that their requests for change are denied

  Forum Editor 13:36 09 May 2010

You're referring to The Electoral Commission, which is a independent body set up by parliament.

The Commission's function is to:-

1. register political parties

2. make sure people understand and follow the rules on party and election finance

3. publish details of where parties and candidates get money from and how they spend it

4. set the standards for running elections and report on how well this is done

5. make sure people understand it is important to register to vote, and know how to vote

6. make sure boundary arrangements for local government in England are fair

Item number 4. is the one that has caused all the trouble, and the Commission has been at pains to excuse itself from any liability. It's true to say that the Commission can only advise returning officers if asked to do so - otherwise it's the job of the returning officer in each constituency to make sure that facilities are adequate, and that the rules are observed.

The Electoral Commission has no powers to compel or enforce, and that's something which needs to be addressed. Something as important as General Election arrangements shouldn't be left to a collection of individuals - there should be a watchdog with teeth, and that must surely be the Electoral Commission.

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