If David Cameron were an American President, He Would Have Been Impeached by Now
The Conservative Government won the 7 May 2015 General Election in Britain to the great surprise of the pollsters and pundits but the reason for that victory is not hard to find.
It happened because the Cameron-led Coalition Government passed the 2013 Individual Elector Registration and Administration Act (2013 IER Act) into law, and that Act has been and is being implemented in a way which denies millions of non-Conservative voters their democratic right to vote.
There are now millions of British people who have been gerrymandered off the Parliamentary Electoral Rolls. Cameron is following his heroine, Mrs Margaret Thatcher, in his deliberate removal of non-Conservative voters from the voters’ rolls. Mrs Thatcher implemented the Poll Tax — the kind of Poll Tax which is forbidden by the 24th Amendment to the Constitution of the United States — and chased millions of poorer voters off the rolls by setting the poll charge high enough to discourage voter registration. The damage Thatcher did to British democracy through that tax has still not been corrected in much of England, because the voter rolls have not been brought up to date. But Thatcher’s Poll Tax fulfilled its intended purpose — a fourth Conservative victory was produced and the undistinguished 1992 Government of John Major was elected.
In theory the 2013 IER Act is an improvement in democratic participation, because instead of the previous Household Electoral Registration system in which the householder listed all the voters in the household and had to do so or risk a £1,000 fine, each qualifying elector under the 2013 IER Act now has to register themselves individually. The 2013 IER Act system registers householders but not their wives or over-18 children. Students attending a university and residing in university halls of residence were all listed previously by the university: now only the resident staff have to be recorded, and all students must register individually. Landlords and property owners in occupation must now register to vote, but their tenants each have to register individually, and millions have not. “Attainers” — young people becoming eighteen within the year and eligible to vote — have to register individually, and now 75% of them don’t.
In the USA the absence of property ownership cannot be used to disqualify voting rights, yet that is exactly how parts of the 2013 IER Act operates.
The Conservatives would of course say it’s all the lost voters’ fault, because if they had watched what the Government was up to and paid attention to the limited press and BBC information about the 2013 IER Act, they all would have realised their new need to register. But their non-registration as voters was something the Government knew about. The piloting of a similar Act in Northern Ireland caused 10.5% of voters to drop off the voters’ rolls — mainly women, tenants in private or local authority houses, students, some black British, relocators and attainers. The bedroom tax operates in 75% of cases to require disabled voters to relocate and relocating voters are less likely to register to vote, so that tax is another disenfranchising measure.
Emily Pankhurst died and women campaigned tirelessly to achieve the right to vote, and David Cameron has denied millions of them that right. Students should not be denied the vote because they are not recorded as voters because at the date of the election they are at university and studying away from home, and now need to register individually at their university location. There is no acceptable justification for the denial of voting rights to so many black or coloured British — yet in Hackney, one of the highest British Black communities, the Electoral Commission has reported that only 59% of previous voters had been registered under the 2013 IER Act. The removal of the voting rights of millions of largely Council tenants is an intolerable denial of their democratic rights. David Cameron has shown himself by his behaviour to be misogynist, anti-student, racialist, elitist, and against the rights of the disabled. British Prime Ministers are expected to be much better than that.
Because the Conservatives have no chance of winning a properly conducted election with a fully registered electorate, they have used the power of government deliberately to reduce the non-Conservative voters on the Parliamentary Electoral Rolls. If David Cameron were an American President, he would be impeached for that activity. Because Britain has no constitution, what David Cameron has done appears to be legal but is totally unethical and scandalous behaviour. In my opinion David Cameron is guilty of “Misconduct in Public Office” but there is no precedent yet for arresting a British Prime Minister on these grounds.
The British people have a right to expect that their Prime Ministers will behave in an honourable way, and will not use the power of Parliament to disenfranchise millions of people and elect a Government with a flawed mandate. David Cameron is a millionaire, educated in Eton, a member of the British elite and governing class, and a cousin of the Queen.
Yet he is an absolute scoundrel.
Not content with winning one election on the basis of a damaged electoral roll, seven million people who are currently on that reduced list of voters are currently having their right to vote questioned and if they do not return that 2013 IER Act questionnaire by December 2015, they will lose the right to vote.
And David Cameron’s Government wishes to pursue its stated highest priority — the use of the flawed and frozen 2013 IER Act parliamentary voter registration data in December 2015 — for a 2016 gerrymandering of constituency boundaries which, as Government spokesmen have announced “may lock Labour out of power for decades.” The Telegraph pointed this out at 5.36 am on 8 May 2015, on the morning after the General Election under the heading “New Commons boundaries top Conservative government agenda” — see:
This article begins:
“Redrawing constituency boundaries to lock Labour out of power for decades is at the top of the agenda for the new Conservative government, senior Tories have said. The changes to parliamentary boundaries, blocked in the last Parliament, could be confirmed quickly and take effect at the 2020 general election, party sources suggested.”
That is not democracy. Britain is no longer a fully representative democracy due to this appalling Prime Minister, and things could get worse. David Cameron is a disgrace to the democratic traditions of Britain, and should forever be known as “Cameron the Gerrymanderer.”
© George Tait Edwards 2015
The author has written a book about these issues, and other matters. See: