posted on May, 25 2015 @ 10:16 AM
a reply to: grainofsand
The information you provided was no doubt cross referenced against government systems, DWP or HMRC via CIS, or against the council tax register in
But not every Brit overseas will be current with DWP or HMRC. Their information, if it exists at all (date retention rules ensure much official
information is weeded eventually, even off computer systems), might be years out of date.
You might have described yourself on your application as British, English for example. But that's the one thing they didn't check when you applied
for to vote ... your nationality. Local officials have no way to check your nationality. They have to rely on your honesty. And i don't think honesty
is a sufficient safeguard when it comes to allowing those overseas to vote in our elections.
Your national insurance number, for example, is not proof of your nationality. It's merely a number used to identify you for tax and welfare
purposes. So the government will have to find a way to cross reference applications from overseas Brits against passport & nationality records. That
will require a law change. I think that will have to be done to ensure that there's no scope for registration fraud from persons overseas.
Digital delivery of government services is one area where UK does quite well. But no system yet exists to automatically cross reference electoral
registration applications against passport & nationality records. There's no prospect of having such a system in place in time either. That's where
it'll have to be done manually, unfortunately, with an army of officials being taken on to create an overseas voting register and to validate
applications. Applicants might have to supply proof of nationality when they apply, that'll need checked manually. All that having to be done whilst
keeping the domestic voting registers up to date, too, registers which might be more active themselves due to voter interest.
That's why I describe this issue as complex, expensive, difficult to administer.