Sir Eric Pickles publishes report into tackling electoral fraud
This independent report makes recommendations about how the government can prevent electoral fraud in the UK.
Former Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, Sir Eric Pickles MP, was asked by the government last year to consider what further changes were needed to make the electoral system more secure. This was particularly in light of the 2015 Tower Hamlets election court judgment that saw the disqualification of the elected mayor for a number of corrupt and illegal practices.
Evidence has been gathered over the last year from local government, the police, academics and election experts.
A series of 50 recommendations are outlined in the report, including:
- clamping down on postal vote ‘harvesting’ by political activists
- piloting some form of identification at polling stations
- action to tackle the links between electoral fraud and immigration fraud
- stronger checks and balances against municipal corruption
Chris Skidmore MP, Minister for the Constitution, said:
I would like to thank Sir Eric Pickles for the work he has undertaken over the past year in producing this detailed and thorough report.
In order to ensure we have a democracy that works for everyone, the government is determined to ensure that the electoral register is as complete and accurate as possible. The introduction of Individual Electoral Registration has already begun to transform our registration system, increasing its accuracy and performance at the same time as seeing record levels of registration. We intend to continue to build on this success.
This report will be an important contribution to our fight against all types of fraud in the UK. We will look closely at the recommendations.
Sir Eric Pickles MP said:
Last year’s court ruling in Tower Hamlets was a wake-up call that state bodies need to do far more to stamp out corruption and restore public confidence. It was local residents who lost out to the crooked politicians who bullied them and wasted their money. The law must be applied equally and fairly to everyone. Integration and good community relations are undermined by the failure to uphold the rule of law and ensure fair play.
The terms of reference for Electoral Fraud Review included:
- examining what steps are necessary to stop voter registration fraud and error, postal voting fraud, impersonation, intimidation, bribery, treating and undue influence
- reviewing the role of councils, the police and the Electoral Commission in deterring, identifying and prosecuting fraud
- considering the recommendations of Richard Mawrey QC in his recent election court judgment on fraud in the London Borough of Tower Hamlets
- recommending to government what practical changes are needed to legislation, guidance and practice
Latest News from
Government announces Mr Justice Langstaff will lead inquiry into the Infected Blood scandal09/02/2018 09:20:00
The Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster announced Mr Justice Langstaff will chair the infected blood scandal Inquiry.
New Electoral Laws proposed to combat intimidation in public life07/02/2018 12:20:51
The government will consult on plans to remove personal information from ballot paper and new electoral law offence.
Youth Democracy Ambassadors to celebrate Suffrage centenary06/02/2018 17:08:35
Minister for the Constitution Chloe Smith announced the government's plans to recruit Youth Democracy Ambassadors on a visit to the Queen Elizabeth’s Girls’ School in Barnet yesterday (5 February).
Government harnesses advances in Behavioural Insights with new framework05/02/2018 10:27:00
A new Crown Commercial Service (CCS) framework is harnessing advances in the science of behavioural insights to tailor public services to citizens.