Electoral Reform Society call for clarity over European elections

Posted on the 29th April 2019

  • Statement from the Electoral Reform Society for immediate release, 29th April 2019. 

The Electoral Reform Society have called for the government to provide clarity over the UK’s participation in the European elections.

It follows comments from the chairman of the Electoral Commission, Sir John Holmes, who described the uncertainty over whether the UK will take part as ‘unprecedented’ [1].

Dr Jess Garland, Director of Research and Policy at the Electoral Reform Society, said:

“While it welcome that the spotlight is being shone on the European elections, there are real concerns over the lack of time to ensure a high-quality, informed and transparent contest.

“As such we may see a stark disconnect between the profile of these elections, and public bodies’ ability to prepare. It is not clear there has been enough time in the official period to ensure that voters are registered, informed and aware of the status of the contest. This has serious implications for public confidence in this process.

“To all intents and purposes, parties and activists are now in campaigning mode. Yet there is still uncertainty over the poll. And we have also seen no attempt to address concerns about unregulated online campaigning activity following the referendum and last general election. 

“In the interests of transparency and public confidence, this uncertainty needs to be addressed by the government.”


Notes to Editors

[1] https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/european-elections-are-a-test-for-our-democratic-institutions-8qt6ktnwx


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