MoD "striving" to ensure Afghan troops a postal vote

Discussion in 'Current Affairs, News and Analysis' started by Skynet, Apr 6, 2010.

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  1. Breaking News

    MoD "striving" to ensure Afghan troops a postal vote
    Apr 6 2010 By Matt McKenzie

    THE Government said today it is ``striving" to ensure that British troops in Afghanistan can vote by post in the General Election.

    Defence minister Baroness Taylor of Bolton said at question time that her department was working with the Ministry of Justice and the Electoral Commission to enable the armed forces to vote.

    ``We are striving to expedite - subject to operational priorities - the delivery of ballot papers to and from Afghanistan for service personnel," she added.
    http://www.journallive.co.uk/north-east-news/breaking-news/2010/04/06/mod-striving-to-ensure-afghan-troops-a-postal-vote-61634-26187746/?

    ``We have encouraged all personnel to register to vote and to vote by proxy."

    Lord Astor of Hever, for the Conservatives, said that ``34,000 full-time members of the armed forces are not registered to vote in this election".

    And he said that Justice minister Michael Wills had admitted there was ``no guarantee" that all votes from Afghanistan would reach Britain in time.

    ``What measures will the Government take to ensure all service votes are counted?" he asked.

    Lady Taylor said that the Electoral Commission had designed ``a bespoke registration form" which was being given to service personnel in Afghanistan.

    She added: ``Special arrangements are being made to despatch ballot papers and indeed to return them as quickly as possible - all, of course, subject to operational requirements."

    The Government has previously said that it will attempt to use supply planes to fly ballot papers to and from Afghanistan.
     
  2. a few thousand bits of paper isn't exactly going to take up a lot of room in a C17
     
  3. Ord_Sgt

    Ord_Sgt RIP

    I remember the last time in 2005 and they didn't bother then, what makes anyone think they will this time?
     
  4. Cold_Collation

    Cold_Collation LE Book Reviewer

    Hackle, where are you?

    (Just thinking back to our last exchange on this.)

    C_C
     
  5. The government knows there are few votes coming from the military. Just because you are expected to defend democracy doesnt mean this government will allow you to take part in it.

    Mugabe would blush at some of the tricks going on in UK.
     
  6. Why don't people just register to vote by proxy? That way there is no additional burden added to an already stretched logistic chain; nor is there an issue of individuals being otherwise engaged and unable to vote! I suspect that most service personnel who aren't registered to vote are just not bothered. The best thing the MoD can do is to educate people how to register and not to concentrate on gimmicks that will probably fail.
     
  7. Cold_Collation

    Cold_Collation LE Book Reviewer

    Hm. Recall a conversation with a young infanteer just out of basic at about the time of the last election.

    Spent quite a bit of time disabusing him of the idea he had that as a serving member of the armed forces he was obliged to vote for the government of the day. He went away quite angry - and not at me...
     
  8. In 1945 we had troops scattered all over the planet and very limited air transport, but we still managed to let them all vote.

    Mind you, Hitler did the country less damage than Gordon Brown.
     
  9. Well last time there was an election all my family lived abroad as expats and I had no one whom I could call upon to vote on my behalf. Is that a simple enough answer for you?
     
  10. Well last time there was an election all my family lived abroad as expats and I had no one whom I could call upon to vote on my behalf. Is that a simple enough answer for you?
     
  11. elovabloke

    elovabloke LE Moderator

    Because its not an option for some and lets try and remember that there are service personnel all over the world that might like to have a vote. This is not a new problem and still the government of the day refuse to sort it.

    The PM gave the country a direct undertaking that the Justice Minister would have a system in place for all members of the forces and families to be able to vote at the next election (PMQs 10 Mar 2010 - 1st question)
     
  12. It is not the expats who are an issue. You have an established air, land and sea line of communication that is not subject to prioritisation of its limited space.

    Edited for poor speeeeelling
     
  13. Cold_Collation

    Cold_Collation LE Book Reviewer

    Last time I tried to vote by proxy, which was under the current government, I came home to a phone message from the local (Labour) consitituency office telling me how I'd applied too late. I f**king well hadn't.

    You've not seen the last of this yet.
     
  14. My bold. Do you really believe the man who has lied in parliament. Or would you rather ensure that by using an established way of voting you can have your legitimate say in the elections? I don't know the figures but I would assume (yes I know what they say about assuming) that the majority of service personnel, and their families if serving overseas, have the ability to use a proxy.

    I am not saying that there should not be a system in place to allow people to vote in any way they see fit. However I look at it practically in that a politicians word is generally worthless and if people want to vote they should do what they already can not what is 'promised' to happen!
     
  15. elovabloke

    elovabloke LE Moderator

    :? :? :? :? :?