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Illiberal Photo-ID for Voting


As opposition strives to unite around a vision of a post-pandemic future, a government so adept at divide and rule would be wise not to unite us in resistance to these measures. Labour Peer Baroness Chakrabarti outlines her views:


A recent election leaflet from West Yorkshire scans as follows: On the left and against a blue background, the Conservative candidate is promoted -

“Voted to Leave and Believes in Britain - backed Brexit and understands local people wanted to take back control. Proud of Our Flag - Believes we should fly our flag proudly across Council buildings. Protecting our Heritage - Defends our statues, monuments and road names against Labour’s woke culture. Won’t take your vote for granted and will stand up for your values.


On the right and red side of the page Labour is described: “The Labour Party and ... Labour MP tried to block Brexit, ignoring your views and vote....Labour Councillors voted against flying the flag. Labour Councils are identifying monuments and heritage to tear down. Labour will take your vote for granted whilst taking the knee.”


You can imagine my views on the communication as a whole. To stoke so-called “culture wars” rather than tackling profound inequality, has been a divide and conquer technique of right-wing nationalists the world over throughout time. However, just as Theresa May warned of the “fine line between being popular and populist” in the context of the infamous Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill, the comparison between a Tory who will “stand up for your values” and Labour who “will take your vote for granted whilst taking the knee”, discards even the dog whistle for the fog horn. Who is the “you” of the “your vote” being wooed by the author?



If government plans for requiring photo voter ID are anything to go by, one thing is clear. The audience in this calculation i