Select committee report shows way forward on voter registration

Stuart Wilks-Heeg

The Political and Constitutional Reform Select Committee’s 10threport of session, Individual Electoral Registration and Electoral Administration, has generatedwidespread media coverage. It is safe to say that a select committee report on electoral registration has never been awaited, and greeted, with such interest.

The reason for the interest, of course, has been the widely-repeated claim that the government’s proposals for the introduction of individual electoral registration (IER) couldlead to 10 million additional voters disappearing from the electoral registers.  The basis for this bleak projection of the impact of IER, the Electoral Commission’s written and oral evidence to the select committee, had been presented as a ‘worst case scenario’. But, perhaps inevitably given the source of the estimate, and the political passions which electoral registration evokes, it quickly acquired the status of ‘fact’ in some circles.   Continue reading