Postal Voting

Thursday, May 05, 2005

Postal vote problems - a summary

It's election day today; if you can vote, please do.

Meanwhile, here's a summary of problems with the postal vote in the elections being held today, to keep in mind in case there are any contentious or surprising results tonight. I'll let you know of any more. Enjoy election day!

Allegations of fraud

  • In Birmingham Sparkbrook & Small Heath, a Labour candidate has had postal votes for neighbours and friends redirected to his house. Earlier this year three Labour councillors from Birmingham were deemed to have taken part in widespread vote fraud in local elections last year, running 'vote factories'. The QC presiding, Richard Mawrey, said the cale of the fraud would 'would disgrace a banana republic'. One man has since had the ruling reversed. In addition, an election official in Birmingham is suspended after 1000 postal votes from last year's elections were found unopened in a council storage room. #
  • In Bradford, two men have been arrested in connection with suspected postal vote fraud for today's general election. #
  • A separate case in Bradford is looking at two Conservative councillors who have registered a large number of people at their own house. #
  • There are also police investigations in Leicester East, Leicester South, Bethnal Green & Bow, High Wycombe, Luton, Southampton and Somerset & Frome. #
  • A further police investigation is taking place in Dungannon. #

Duplicate ballot papers

  • 363 voters in Basingstoke have been sent duplicate papers. #
  • 2,500 duplicates have been sent to voters in Oldham West & Royston. #

Misdirected or lost ballot papers

  • In Macclesfield the delivery of 2,400 ballots has been delayed. #
  • 300 papers meant for Windsor have instead been sent to Skegness. #
  • Hundreds of ballot papers have been reported late in Hereford. #
  • 10 people in Aberdeen have reported their postal votes have not come through. #

Misprinted ballot papers

  • 16,000 ballots in Wyre, Lancashire, for the council elections have been sent out with numbers that do not match the declaration form, making them invalid if sent in. #
  • 400 papers in Colchester also do not have properly matching numbers. #
  • 1100 papers in Suffolk for the county council elections have been misprinted, asking for the wrong number of candidates to be voted for. #
  • 200 papers in Edinburgh have had mismatching numbers printed. #

Miscellaneous problems

  • In Flintshire, Alyn and Deeside, Delyn and the Vale of Clwyd, envelopes sent out cannot seal properly. #

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