Easington MP blasts Government's voter ID plan

A North-East Labour MP has joined calls for the Government to abandon plans to introduce mandatory voter identification at the next election.

Monday, 6th September 2021, 4:35 pm
Updated Monday, 6th September 2021, 4:51 pm
Easington MP Grahame Morris

Easington MP Grahame Morris has branded the plan as “discriminatory” and says it should be ditched because it reverses “decades of democratic progress”.

The Government formally announced plans to introduce mandatory Voter ID at the next election in the Queen’s Speech and will require voters to present photo ID before they are able to vote at polling stations in future elections.

Labour have called on the Conservatives to urgently rethink the policy, raising concerns that it will threaten to bar millions of people from exercising their democratic right to vote.

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The opposition party says that, since the policy was first announced in December 2016, the Government has received multiple warnings from charities, civil society figures and campaign groups that mandatory voter ID – if rolled out nationally – could pull up the drawbridge for millions of voters.

Mr Morris said: “Voter ID is a total waste of taxpayers’ money. The policy is set to cost millions of pounds at every election.

“Voting is a safe and secure process in Britain and ministers should be promoting confidence in our election system instead of spreading baseless scare stories which threaten our democracy.”

He added: “Millions of people lack photo ID in this country – in particular the elderly, low income and black, Asian and ethnic minority voters.

“The Conservatives are reversing decades of democratic progress and urgently need to rethink this pointless policy.”