The government has been accused of suppressing voters’ rights with the potential disenfranchisement of tens of thousands of people after plans to introduce compulsory photo ID for voters were leaked.
Reports that the Queen’s speech contains proposals to make showing ID such as driving licences or passports at the ballot box a requirement have been met anger by campaigners who say the move is a threat to democratic participation.
Ministers were accused of using a “sledgehammer to crack a nut” as the numbers of personation fraud during elections was tiny, critics said. Instead, voters were far more worried about low turnout, questionable donations and foreign interference, it was claimed.
Recent limited trials of voter ID had resulted in more than 700 people being denied a vote, said campaigners.