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Should prisoners be allowed to vote?

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Should prisoners be allowed to vote?

Post by oftenwrong on Sat Nov 24, 2012 10:48 pm

First topic message reminder :

Election Law is in a constant state of flux, and David Cameron has made clear his opposition to European decrees that Prisoners should have the vote. Many people agree that upon conviction of breaking the law, a convict should not enjoy the liberties of free men. Nevertheless, our own Government stands under threat of sanction under European Law, universal disapproval for contempt of the Rule of Law, and compensation claims from Prisoners.

The requirement can easily be met by declaring all prisoners entitled to vote in the same constituency, to be represented in Parliament by a single Independent candidate.

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Re: Should prisoners be allowed to vote?

Post by Ivan on Sun Oct 26, 2014 10:34 pm

We’re supposed to live in a democracy, although that’s arguable when we have a hereditary monarchy, an unelected upper house and first-past-the-post in the lower house. Notwithstanding that, I’ve always assumed that a democracy is a system where everyone has the right to vote, and the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) seems to concur.

There is cause for concern when politicians start chipping away at what are universal rights. The Tories have done this with child benefits, and if they get re-elected who is to say that they won’t reduce still further the number of people who are entitled to them? Some Tories would also like to restrict pensioner entitlements such as the winter fuel allowance, television licences and bus passes, on the basis that not everyone needs them (though the cost of means-testing may actually exceed any savings).

I believe it was Michele Bachmann (but it could have been another Tea Party nutter) who suggested that people receiving any form of welfare shouldn’t be entitled to vote. Both the Republicans and the Tories seem to look for ways of making it more difficult to vote; in the case of the latter, that involves individual registration, no doubt in the hope that those who aren’t Tories will be less likely to get around to registering.

Now the Tories are determined to deny the ECHR adjudication that prisoners should be allowed to vote. Once the principle is clearly established that voting is not for everyone, how can we be sure that they won’t, if you’ll excuse the pun, take a few leaves from the Tea Party and argue that if you’re receiving benefits you aren’t entitled to vote? And then what, pensioners? You always have to look out for the thin end of the wedge with the Tories.

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Re: Should prisoners be allowed to vote?

Post by oftenwrong on Sun Oct 26, 2014 10:54 pm

"Now the Tories are determined to deny the ECHR adjudication that prisoners should be allowed to vote. Once the principle is clearly established that voting is not for everyone, how can we be sure that they won’t, if you’ll excuse the pun, take a few leaves from the Tea Party and argue that if you’re receiving benefits you aren’t entitled to vote? And then what, pensioners?"

Or indeed anyone who cannot be identified by a Tory as "One of us".
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Re: Should prisoners be allowed to vote?

Post by stuart torr on Sun Oct 26, 2014 11:07 pm

I would not be surprised regarding the benefits Ivan, that would guarantee tory victory almost would it not.
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