2022-11-25 06:00:49

Call these voter ID laws what they really are: voter suppression and an attack on young people

Logo The Guardian
The Guardian
By Polly Toynbee

It slipped out quietly this month in the brouhaha of the approaching budget. The regulations listing acceptable ID documents that will allow people to vote at elections were not included in the shameless voter-suppression bill that passed through parliament this year. Are you surprised that the list includes all kinds of acceptable ID held by older voters, but that ID the young might have has been struck out? The whole purpose is to make it harder for young people, poor people and those who often move home to vote.

So many outrageous things have happened recently that indignation fatigue is a risk. We grow weary, blase and cynical. But warping the voting system in the rights favour is a permanent harm, copied from the US. First-past-the-post already gives the right a huge electoral advantage, but the Tories want more.

As from next Mays local elections, all voters must bring along ID specified in this list. As the Electoral Reform Society (ERS) says, the kind of photo ID required is what older people are more likely to have. For example, why is a Transport for London Oyster card for 60+ travellers acceptable, but not a near-identical Oyster 18+ card? Let that stand as their true intention. Voters who dont have a driving licence or passport or various forms of disabled persons ID all of which are more likely to be held by the old can apply to their local authority for a free plastic voter ID photo card. How many would do that?

Continue read on theguardian.com

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