Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Why can citizen of the Irish Republic vote in UK general elections ?

Given how hard the government has cracked down on UK citizens over seas being able to vote on general elections, isn't it about time to ask why we still allow Irish citizens to vote in general elections in England, Scotland and Wales. ( I see the case for why they are allowed to vote in Northern Ireland. )

Could it be the way they are expected to vote ?


Anonymous said...

Maybe they are regarded as being aligned with the UK? Will we soon have this problem with Scottish voters?

Man in a Shed said...

Its a hangover from days gone by - but is it justified now ? I wonder how many seats go left as a result ?

Croydonian said...

It dates back to the birth of the Irish Free State, I think. Commonwealth nationals as well as Irish can vote in UK general elections.

I'm quite happy with that as long as there is reciprocity, and would approve of an arrangement whereby ex-pats in mature democracies (say at least 10 years of free and fair elections) can choose to vote at 'home' or abroad in each electoral cycle. My mother votes in UK general elections, despite having been in France for years, and finds it all a bit silly, as she would far rather vote there. Likewise, I have many French etc friends who cannot vote in UK elections despite paying our taxes etc etc.