Catherine McKinnell MP today – 18th May – challenged Ministers during Justice Questions on proposals to introduce photographic ID for elections.
The Government recently announced proposals to introduce a requirement for photographic ID to vote in elections.
Government research shows that 6% of people in the North East do not have up to date photo ID and that 44% would be very unlikely to apply for an identity card in order to vote.
Catherine challenged the Justice Secretary asking “Can the Justice Secretary update us on the most recent data on investigations and prosecutions for in-person voter fraud because, without evidence of significant abuse, this sledgehammer to crack a nut risks undermining rather than protecting the integrity of elections by unjustifiably preventing many people from voting”.
Following the question Catherine stated “Plans to require people to produce photographic identification at polling stations will disproportionately impact on voters from lower incomes and minority backgrounds. This is a clear attempt at voter suppression by this Conservative Government.
“Preventing or making it harder for people to vote undermines our elections and our democracy. The Government should be encouraging voting and making sure everyone who eligible to vote, can vote, rather than making it harder.”