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The anon letter is based on false statements and is telling people to vote against the NDP on bais that they will have control and if there is an NDP 100's of houses will be built everywhere which is not the case under the emerging NDP.  The letter also says many other untruths and urges residents to vote no to the NDP.  It has been posted to all voters and some has been hand delivered by a person standing to be a Parish Councillor.
by (140 points)

2 Answers

0 votes

(The dots are just to make up the character count, the answer is a simple one word answer.)
by (19.7k points)
0 votes
You cannot send anonymous election material. It must show the printers name and address, who promoted it, and the candidates name and address. It is a criminal offence not to display this information, so this would be a matter for the police to investigate.

Section 110 of the Representation of the People Act 1983
by (4.0k points)
Agreed, election materiel (for election candidates) must have the attributes described in the Act.
How can it be election materiel if it is anonymous?  How would anyone know who to vote for?  The materiel is “ reported” as being in relation to an NDP rather than an election of a candidate.
The poster is saying anonymous but intimates knowledge of the creator / distributor…

That’s odd….
As the OP stated it was a councillor standing for election and we are in the run up to that election i assumed it must be somehow related.

If i get a leaflet saying 'Vote Joe Bloggs' then already have a good idea it was from Joe Bloggs. Surely its the anonymous ones that need the imprint more than the obvious ones.

Is the councillor in this case standing for council on a anti NDP ticket? How many others have similar views? When is the referendum on the NDP?
And on  a separate note, was this just a leaflet through the door or was it personally addressed to a named person?. If it was addressed to a named person then it cannot be anonymous as you have to allow people to exercise their legal rights under GDPR.
I'm not disagreeing with you about the requirements for statement of origin on election materiel - that is, as you reference, a matter of fact.

I'm just asking - how can it be election materiel if it is anonymous.  The 2 are mutually exclusive since for it to be election materiel it would need to indicate which candidate, party or group the elector is being encouraged to vote for.

To take the stated points in the order they are presented:

Can someone standing to be a parish councillor deliver an anonymous letter - yes, they can, it would appear that they have (by assumption) which would prove that they 'can.'

Can they "tell" somebody how to vote - again, yes they can, they can say whatever they like (within the law) but it doesn't mean anyone has to take any notice.

Does the letter contain "untruths?"  It might contain opinions which others disagree with but that may, or may not equate to an untruth.  Untruth in politics...  Who'd have thought it.

Is it appropriate yes/no?

Does it effect any ones vote?

I'm just testing the theories...  Election materiel or just a leaflet about an NDP?  If there is a genuine belief that the pre-election guidelines have / are being breached then report it to the electoral registration office for them to adjudicate.
The person delivering the anonymous letter is standing to be a Parish Councillor and upon being witnessed and questioned as to why he was standing he said he was told to stand by someone who is already on the PC. The NDP referendum and the PC votes are all taking place on the same date.  The letter contains false statements such as if you vote for the NDP you lose control and developments of over 100 houses will be built when in fact the opposite is true as the NDP is against large developments.  It also says that a member of the PC voted on their own planning application and pushed it through when in fact the opposite was true,  That person had to abstain and leave the room and the rest of the council decided to abstain as they felt that was the fairest way of dealing with as they knew the person.  It contained several other mistruths and as a result has caused huge confusion.  It has been sent out to all electoral voters in the Parish mostly by post but some hand deliveries so whoever has posted it out as had access to voter's addresses.
Doesn’t sound at all uncommon or particularly heinous. If someone has been libelled they can take their own recourse, not so for the council which could, if it chose to, issue a statement to refute and reference minutes which ‘should’ show the outcome of the vote and who / when any Cllr left the room.
Under the circumstances you describe, I’m not  sure I’d waste the effort of attempting to raise it through the local electoral registration officer or the electoral commission - but that’s the route to take if you feel sufficiently strongly about it.

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