Tony Blair proposed national identity cards without any clear reason. David Davis MP, the-then Shadow Home Secretary, won a courageous by-election in Haltemprice and Howden, emphasising his opposition.
Boris Johnson promised to destroy any ID card he was obliged to show, even calling them a plastic poll tax. They were right and plans were defeated.
How times change! Boris Johnson now plans a law making voting conditional on production of photo ID. He claims this will reduce fraud although impersonation in order to vote is not a significant problem with just two convictions in 2019 and there is no evidence of undetected cases.
I find this drive for ID cards by the back door sinister. About 11 million people – 25 per cent of electors – have no passport or photo-bearing driving licence, documents that will be required for voter verification.
They are risk being denied a vote, a disgrace for a nation that claims to be a cradle of democracy. This proposal should be dropped immediately.
Referendum in Scotland
From: Thomas W Jefferson, Batty Lane, Howden, Goole.
THE letter by Dr O Sykes on Scottish independence fails to deal with the political reality of the situation (The Yorkshire Post, May 12). In 2011, Alex Salmond proved that even a majority of seats doesn’t translate into an endorsement of independence, as some of those happy to have an SNP government don’t support a separation.
That’s why Nicola Sturgeon’s minority has caused her to beat a hasty retreat, under cover of Covid, while she bides her time.
She knows that if she were to have her referendum anytime soon she would most probably lose it and her job and the issue really would be off the table for a generation.
Only when the opinion polls consistently show over 55 per cent support could she reasonably expect to be allowed a referendum, but that would have to be 60 per cent if the threshold for a win were increased to 55 per cent.
Blame Tories and austerity
From: Peter Brown, Shadwell, Leeds.
IN response to Rother Valley MP Alexander Stafford’s rants about Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council, public services in Britain have suffered because of 11 years of national Tory rule and austerity.
The resentment built up and resulting anti-David Cameron feelings almost certainly contributed to the disastrous Brexit referendum result.
This “levelling up” Conservative Party is claiming to have now abandoned such austerity but – instead of having the courage to at least admit its responsibility for damage caused – is trying to lay blame at the feet of Labour-run councils. And not just in Rotherham.
As Jerry Diccox says (The Yorkshire Post, May 13), the Boris Johnson government – supported by MPs such as Mr Stafford – are “taking the public for mugs”.
Why Labour lost voters
From: Malcolm Nicholson, Barwick-in-Elmet, Leeds.
WE are constantly being told by Labour politicians that the reason for their dismal showing in the recent elections is that they have failed to get their message across to the electorate.
Has it occurred to them that they have got their message across and nobody wants it? When a party is at odds with its core vote, it is destined to remain a party in opposition.
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