Filed under: Election 2005
It’s now the Tories turn to start racking up the excuses for yet another electoral failure in advance by harping on about the possibility of electoral fraud under the current postal voting system.
Unfortunately for the Tory’s Co-Chairman, Liam Fox, who’s been quoted by the BBC as telling party workers in Somerset that:
“It is clear Mr Blair’s reckless fiddling with the electoral system has raised widespread public concern about the integrity of Britain’s electoral system.
“The electoral practices of the 18th and early 19th Centuries, such as intimidation and fraud, risk becoming the hallmark of the 21st.”
… no one at Tory HQ has bothered to remind him that when the Electoral Commission raised concerns about postal ballots, his own party, together with both Labour and the Lib Dems, acted to block any moves to tighten the rules.
Even more embarrassingly, the only concrete investigation into alleged electoral fraud so far this campaign turns out to centre on the actions of a Tory Councillor in Bradford who is currently trying to come up with a plausible explanation as to why 13 people had applied for a postal vote from his home address and another 12 applications has been received from a derelict house which, until last year, was co-owned by the Councillor in question.
It would appear that the Tories are well qualified to talk about the electoral practices of the 18th and earlier 19th Century, not are the only UK political party to have survived from that era but they may still have some first-hand experience to go on.