Individual Electoral Registration

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Individual Electoral Registration (IER) is the voter registration system which took effect from 10 June 2014 in England and Wales and from 19 September 2014 in Scotland. [1] Under the previous system, the "head of the household" was required to register all residents of the household who are eligible. Under the new system individuals are required to register themselves, as well as provide their National Insurance number and date of birth on the application form so that their identity can be verified. [2]

England and Wales Administrative jurisdiction within the United Kingdom

England and Wales is a legal jurisdiction covering England and Wales, two of the four constituent countries of the United Kingdom. ’England and Wales’ forms the constitutional successor to the former Kingdom of England and follows a single legal system, known as English law.

The National Insurance number is a number used in the United Kingdom in the administration of the National Insurance or social security system. It is also used for some purposes in the UK tax system. The number is described by the United Kingdom government as a "personal account number".

Contents

Background

The Westminster government had introduced IER to Northern Ireland in 2002 in the Electoral Fraud (Northern Ireland) Act 2002, but England, Wales and Scotland continued to use a system of householder registration. [3]

Northern Ireland Part of the United Kingdom lying in the north-east of the island of Ireland, created 1921

Northern Ireland is a part of the United Kingdom in the north-east of the island of Ireland, variously described as a country, province or region. Northern Ireland shares a border to the south and west with the Republic of Ireland. In 2011, its population was 1,810,863, constituting about 30% of the island's total population and about 3% of the UK's population. Established by the Northern Ireland Act 1998 as part of the Good Friday Agreement, the Northern Ireland Assembly holds responsibility for a range of devolved policy matters, while other areas are reserved for the British government. Northern Ireland co-operates with the Republic of Ireland in several areas, and the Agreement granted the Republic the ability to "put forward views and proposals" with "determined efforts to resolve disagreements between the two governments".

Electoral Fraud (Northern Ireland) Act 2002 United Kingdom legislation

The Electoral Fraud Act 2002 is an Act of the Parliament of the United Kingdom which reformed the electoral system in Northern Ireland. The act amended the Representation of the People Act 1983 by strengthening the requirements in the electoral registration process and requiring photographic identification at polling stations.

The UK's politically independent Electoral Commission had been pushing for such a reform for some time. [4] In September 2010, Mark Harper, the government's Minister for Constitutional Reform, announced the plan. [4] A spokesman for the Electoral Reform Society, an independent NGO, expressed some reservations: "You're potentially looking at registration rates in the 50% region. It will make some problems worse.". [4] One recent study has also suggested that it will lead to a decline in electoral registration, unless other measures are put in place to offset these reductions. [5]

Electoral Commission (United Kingdom) an independent body set up by the UK Parliament

The Electoral Commission is the election commission of the United Kingdom. It is an independent body, set up in 2001 by the British Parliament. It regulates party and election finance and sets standards for how elections should be run.

Mark Harper British politician

Mark James Harper is a British Conservative Party politician. Harper was born in Swindon and studied Philosophy, Politics and Economics at Brasenose College, Oxford. He was a chartered accountant before becoming the Member of Parliament for the Forest of Dean constituency in 2005.

Electoral Reform Society political group in the United Kingdom

The Electoral Reform Society (ERS) is a political pressure group based in the United Kingdom which promotes electoral reform. It seeks to replace the first-past-the-post voting system with one of proportional representation, advocating the single transferable vote. It is the world's oldest operating organisation concerned with political and electoral reform.

Transition

The Government has stated that 35 million voters will be transferred to the new system automatically as their identity can be verified using the Department of Work and Pensions database. The remainder will be required to prove their identity in order to remain on the electoral register. [6]

Those who were added to the register under the previous system were not removed until after the general election in May 2015. [7]

Legislation

The Cameron government introduced the Electoral Registration and Administration Bill 2012 in the Queen's Speech in May, 2012 [8] in order to provide for the introduction of compulsory IER for those wishing to vote by post or by proxy in 2014, and compulsory IER for all registrations by 2015. [8] The Bill passed swiftly through the House of Commons and saw its second reading in the House of Lords on 24 July 2012, having been introduced for the Coalition by the Liberal Democrat peer, Lord Wallace of Saltaire. [9] It passed committee stage on 14 January 2013, and received Royal Assent on 31 January 2013 thereby passing into law as the Electoral Registration and Administration Act 2013. [10]

Cameron–Clegg coalition Government of the United Kingdom

David Cameron and Nick Clegg formed the Cameron–Clegg coalition, after the former was invited by Queen Elizabeth II to form a new government, following the resignation of Prime Minister Gordon Brown on 11 May 2010. It was the first coalition government in the UK since the Churchill war ministry and was led by Cameron with Clegg as Deputy Prime Minister, composed of members of both the Conservative Party and the Liberal Democrats.

Postal voting voting, election, ballot papers, distributed to electors or returned by post, mail

Postal voting is voting in an election whereby ballot papers are distributed to electors or returned by post, in contrast to electors voting in person at a polling station or electronically via an electronic voting system. Historically, postal votes must be distributed and placed in return mail before the scheduled election day, it is sometimes referred to as a form of early voting. It can also be used as an absentee ballot. However, in recent times the model in the US has morphed, in municipalities that use postal voting exclusively, to be one of ballots being mailed out to voters, but the return method taking on alternatives of return by mail or dropping off the ballot in person via secure drop boxes and/or voting centers.

Proxy voting is a form of voting whereby a member of a decision-making body may delegate his or her voting power to a representative, to enable a vote in absence. The representative may be another member of the same body, or external. A person so designated is called a "proxy" and the person designating him or her is called a "principal". Proxy appointments can be used to form a voting bloc that can exercise greater influence in deliberations or negotiations. Proxy voting is a particularly important practice with respect to corporations; in the United States, investment advisers often vote proxies on behalf of their client accounts.

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Compulsory voting requires citizens to register to vote and to go to their polling place or vote on election day

Compulsory voting is an effect of laws which require eligible citizens to register and vote in elections, and may impose penalties on those who fail to do so. As of August 2013, 22 countries provide for compulsory voting, and 11 of them — about 5% of all United Nations members — enforce it.

Voter registration is the requirement that a person otherwise eligible to vote register on an electoral roll before they will be entitled or permitted to vote. Such enrollment may be automatic or may require application being made by the eligible voter. The rules governing registration vary between jurisdictions. Some jurisdictions have "election day registration" and others do not require registration, or may require production of evidence of entitlement to vote at time of voting. In some jurisdictions registration by those of voting age is compulsory, while in most it is optional. In jurisdictions where registration is voluntary, an effort may be made to encourage persons otherwise eligible to vote to register, in what is called as a voter registration drive.

Elections in Belgium

Elections in Belgium are organised for legislative bodies only, and not for executive functions. Direct elections take place for the European Parliament, the bicameral Federal Parliament, the Parliaments of the Communities and Regions, the provincial councils, the municipal councils and a few district councils. Voting is mandatory and all elections use proportional representation which in general requires coalition governments.

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The electoral roll is a list of persons who are eligible to vote in a particular electoral district and who are registered to vote, if required in a particular jurisdiction. An electoral roll has a number of functions, especially to streamline voting on election day. Voter registration is also used to combat electoral fraud by enabling authorities to verify an applicant's identity and entitlement to a vote, and to ensure a person doesn't vote multiple times. In jurisdictions where voting is compulsory, the electoral roll is used to indicate who has failed to vote. Most jurisdictions maintain permanent electoral rolls while some jurisdictions compile new electoral rolls before each election. In some jurisdictions, people to be selected for jury or other civil duties are chosen from an electoral roll.

Nadra

The National Database and Registration Authority (NADRA) (Urdu:نادرا), commonly called Nadra, is an independent and autonomous agency under Ministry of Interior, Government of Pakistan that regulates government databases and statistically manages the sensitive registration database of all the national citizens of Pakistan.

Electors must be on the electoral register in order to vote in elections and referendums in the UK. Electoral registration officers within local authorities have a duty to compile and maintain accurate electoral registers.

Electoral reform in the United States efforts to change the electoral system used in the United States

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A resident register is a government database which contains information on the current residence of persons. In countries where registration of residence is compulsory, the current place of residence must be reported to the registration office or the police within a few days after establishing a new residence. In some countries, residence information may be obtained indirectly from voter registers or registers of driver licenses. Besides a formal resident registers or population registers, residence information needs to be disclosed in many situations, such as voter registration, passport application, and updated in relation to drivers licences, motor vehicle registration, and many other purposes. The permanent place of residence is a common criterion for taxation including the assessment of a person's income tax.

Electoral reform is change in electoral systems to improve how public desires are expressed in election results. That can include reforms of:

Elections in the United Kingdom types of elections in the United Kingdom

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Electoral Registration and Administration Act 2013 United Kingdom legislation

The Electoral Registration and Administration Act 2013 is an Act of the Parliament of the United Kingdom which amended electoral law in the United Kingdom. It introduced Individual Electoral Registration (IER).

Transparency of Lobbying, Non-party Campaigning and Trade Union Administration Act 2014 United Kingdom legislation


The Transparency of Lobbying, Non-party Campaigning and Trade Union Administration Act 2014 is an Act of Parliament in the United Kingdom introduced in July 2013. The Bill was sponsored by the Cabinet Office and the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS). It was often referred to as "The Lobbying Bill" for short. It passed all Parliamentary stages, and received Royal Assent on 30 January 2014.

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Election Commission of India election regulatory body of India

The Election Commission of India is an autonomous constitutional authority responsible for administering election processes in India. The body administers elections to the Lok Sabha, Rajya Sabha, state Legislative Assemblies, state legislative Councils, and the offices of the President and Vice President of the country. The Election Commission operates under the authority of Constitution per Article 324, and subsequently enacted Representation of the People Act. The commission has the powers under the Constitution, to act in an appropriate manner when the enacted laws make insufficient provisions to deal with a given situation in the conduct of an election. Being a constitutional authority, Election Commission is amongst the few institutions which function with both autonomy and freedom, along with the country’s higher judiciary, the Union Public Service Commission and the Comptroller and Auditor General of India.

References

  1. Gov.uk, 18 December 2013,
  2. BBC, 18 December 2013,
  3. BBC News, September 15, 2010, Individual voter ID plan brought forward to 2014
  4. 1 2 3 Polly Curtiss, Whitehall Correspondent, The Guardian, 15 September 2010, New voter registration rules to be introduced
  5. James, T. S. (25 June 2012). "The Spill-Over and Displacement Effects of Implementing Election Administration Reforms: Introducing Individual Electoral Registration in Britain". Parliamentary Affairs. doi:10.1093/pa/gss032.
  6. BBC News, 25 October 2013,
  7. "Publicity campaign begins to highlight voting changes". BBC News. BBC. 3 July 2014. Retrieved 17 July 2014.
  8. 1 2 Cabinet Office, May 9, 2012, THE QUEEN’S SPEECH 2012 – BRIEFING NOTES
  9. Houses of Parliament, Parliamentary business news, 25 July 2012, Electoral Registration and Administration Bill
  10. Electoral Registration and Administration Bill 2012-13