Postal Voting

Oral Answers to Questions — Electoral Commission Committee – in the House of Commons at 2:30 pm on 21st February 2005.

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Photo of Bob Spink Bob Spink Conservative, Castle Point 2:30 pm, 21st February 2005

What recommendations the Electoral Commission has made on improving the security of postal voting.

Photo of Angela Browning Angela Browning Vice-Chair, Conservative Party

The Electoral Commission has recommended changes to strengthen the legal framework for postal voting, including the introduction of offences relating to undue influence, personation and fraudulent postal vote applications, as well as post-election security checks of postal vote stationery.

Photo of Bob Spink Bob Spink Conservative, Castle Point

I am grateful for that response, but what is being done specifically to ensure that postal ballot papers sent to residential homes or to those with learning difficulties are not hijacked and misused by people other than the intended recipients?

Photo of Angela Browning Angela Browning Vice-Chair, Conservative Party

My hon. Friend will know that the commission has made specific recommendations to the Government, which we hope that they will take up. In particular, we are waiting to hear from the Government about how EROs will check what has happened post election, including the checking of groups who have been identified as possible targets for some form of postal vote fraud. Such groups certainly include the vulnerable people whom my hon. Friend mentioned.