Reply To: Elections aftermath

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Kim Sanders-Fisher

SA – I think you are spot on about the arrogant show of confidence shown by Tories despite the train-wreck performance full of Boris gaffes and hiding from public scrutiny. Boris smashed that “Ming Vase” into tiny pieces and got away with just a naughty boy grin and a tepid joke again and again. People on the ground throughout the country were well aware of the huge positive response to Corbyn and Labour, exposed on social media, even if they were totally ignored by the BBC.

Also on Twitter: Postal Vote Investigation @postalvoteprobe is actively trying to corral Postal Vote data using Freedom of Information Requests. One post says: “Only had a few postal vote data come in. The trend Marginals very high postal vote 30-43% (Bridgend, Wrexham, Blackpool) and less but still high postal vote turnout in safe seats (Ogmore, Frith,) A pattern? As more and more data comes in from FOI requests we shall see #PostalVotes”

A reply asks: “How could you use this data to prove there was any fraud if there indeed was fraud? dm your thoughts” to which Postal Vote Investigation @postalvoteprobe suggests the following:
“Presumably if you could prove that more than 1432 people who had postal votes couldn’t have used them because they were either dead, moved or didn’t use them (arrived late etc) then you could prove phantom postal votes had been used.”

This tactic was used in Scotland after those investigating discovered that in some areas the number of postal votes returned was as high as 96%. This figure was highly improbably because the postal vote packs are sent out to all those registered to receive a postal vote despite the fact that this list can never be 100% up to date. People move out, die or go to jail, but this is only fully updated once a year; they might also ignore their right to vote, making the 96% return rate highly suspicious.

A later post highlights: “The postal voting system is far more complicated than voting in a polling booth. It is possible to systematically create postal votes for a party, whilst systematically suppressing postal votes for another party and we will investigate how.”

Another person away on holiday during the election used a postal vote and asks: “Is it possible for me to verify that our votes were recorded correctly and as intended?”
This question is a highly relevant one as, due to the timing of this election, postal votes were not confined to the elderly and disabled. Not only were more people concerned about the winter weather, but the vote was during a week when university students were on the move going into their Christmas break. This was a predominantly younger voting bloc, more likely to support Labour, that Boris would prefer not to cast their ballots.

Postal Vote Investigation @postalvoteprobe replied with useful details: “all you have to do is email your local electoral services…” “Just put your postcode in to get contact details from “Your election information.” Enter your postcode to find your electoral services team at your local council. “You need to send your postal and proxy vote application forms to them.”

Replying to a question from a voter in Wrexham, another check on your postal vote to see if it was included and counted correctly for your chosen candidate is suggested: “the marked register which you can view for free under supervision will show everyone who had a postal vote. You have to put the request in writing to [email protected]

Unfortunately, the EC will not have the full data sets available for months as these will be sent in piecemeal from constituencies across the country. Even when it is finally available certain key pieces of information are not included. If postal votes were counted separately we could immediately tell if the ballot had been stuffed in favour of one party: why is this not the case?

If the Electoral Commission was given government authority to be able to function more effectively in the best interests of the public, transparency and secure elections, all of this information would be rapidly available in one place. Until the safguards are improved, we must work with what we have got to help expose the truth. We need more people to file FOI requests and demand viewing access to the voting results in all local constituency. I would suggest that you arrange a viewing accompanied by a local representative.

The powers allocated to the Electoral Commission drastically needs to be stepped-up to eliminate the outsourcing loophole and secure the integrity of our electoral system. This is an urgent demand even if there was no vote rigging in this or previous elections and referendums. The entire system is wide open to vote rigging, fraud and corruption: this must stop. We must put extreme pressure on the government to make these vital changes and/or renationalize our Electoral System. A watchdog that cannot watch is just a dog!