Government agrees to let people queuing at 10pm vote in future elections

Ever since the 2010 general election saw long queues of people unable to vote at some polling stations there has been a debate about whether at future general elections people still in the queue at closing time should be able to vote.

That is the rule for some elections in the UK and is an obvious reaction to the 2010 problems. On the other hand, the current cut off is clear and unambiguous. Defining the back of a queue, if there are people milling around, could be rather less so.

However this evening the government finally came down on the side of changing the rules:

Following pressure from peers on all side of the House of Lords, Cabinet Office spokesman Lord Wallace of Saltaire said he would tonight bring in amendments to the Electoral Registration and Administration Bill that would deal with the issue.

His move came as a concession to peers led by QC Lord Pannick, an independent crossbencher, who were calling for the change…

Lord Wallace told Lord Pannick during report stage that if he withdrew his ammendment on the issue the Government would bring forward their own proposals at third reading. [Press Association copy]

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