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Tue, 11 August 2020

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Electoral Commission 'troubled' by reports of double-voting

Electoral Commission 'troubled' by reports of double-voting

John Ashmore

2 min read

The body overseeing UK elections has raised concerns that some voters have broken the law by voting twice in the recent general election.


The Electoral Commission said it had received some 38 letters from MPs and 1,000 emails from members of the public raising the issue of double-voting.

Although it is legal for someone to be registered to vote in two different seats - a situation encountered by the majority of university students - voting more than once is illegal. 

“Although people may lawfully be registered to vote in more than one place in certain circumstances, it is troubling that some voters appear to have admitted voting more than once at the general election, which is an offence,” a recent report from the Commission said.

At the same time the Commission has been clear it does not believe there was any widespread voter fraud during June's poll.

The body also released figures showing that the electorate is larger than ever, with a surge in voter registrations in the past few months pushing the total to 46.8m people. 

Almost 70% of new registrations were from people under the age of 34, with 96% of them registering online.

Labour's shadow minister for voter engagement, Cat Smith, said the issue of voting twice was problematic, but should not be used to discourage people from registering.

“A blanket ban on being registered at two addresses would exclude those who for reasons of work or study need to be registered in two places,” she told the Times.

“This cannot be an attempt to make it harder for young people and students to register to vote.”

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