Electoral Fraud

Oral Answers to Questions — Electoral Commission Committee – in the House of Commons at 9:30 am on 29 January 2015.

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Photo of Philip Davies Philip Davies Conservative, Shipley 9:30, 29 January 2015

What steps are being taken to tackle electoral fraud at the forthcoming general election.

Photo of Gary Streeter Gary Streeter Conservative, South West Devon

The Electoral Commission has worked with the College of Policing to publish detailed guidance to police forces on preventing and detecting electoral fraud. Additional measures are also being put in place by returning officers and police forces in areas where there have been allegations of electoral fraud at previous elections. The Electoral Commission has worked with political parties to agree a code of conduct for campaigners and is developing a simple guide for voters about how to protect their vote and report electoral fraud.

Photo of Philip Davies Philip Davies Conservative, Shipley

I commend the Electoral Commission on asking the universities of Manchester and Leeds to produce a report on electoral fraud in the Pakistani and Bangladeshi communities in this country in particular. We have had problems with that in the Bradford district in the past, I am afraid to say. One of the recommendations was that some kind of identification be taken into the polling stations when people vote. I think that that would be a massive step forward. Is this something the Electoral Commission will progress?

Photo of Gary Streeter Gary Streeter Conservative, South West Devon

My hon. Friend is right to draw the House’s attention to the important report released by the Electoral Commission this week, which is the first of its kind. The Electoral Commission has separately recommended that additional identification be taken by every voter into the polling stations, but that is a matter now for this House and for Government to decide, and it is therefore perhaps something to come back to after the 2015 election.