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Western Arctic MP wants changes to fair elections act

Yellowknife, NWT – Some senators are calling for changes to the Harper government’s proposed fair elections act, so that the process of vouching can continue.

That’s just one of several recommendations being tabled by a Senate Committee this week.

Western Arctic MP Dennis Bevington says the vouching system works well here in the NWT where many people, especially out in the communities, don’t have all their government identification.

“We want to see that vouching remain as part of the electoral system. Everyone says it’s not a problem. The Conservatives going against this vouching system is based on no evidence of fraud and it’s going to hurt the kind of people who generally don’t vote for the Conservatives so we’re very skeptical of why they’re doing this and we don’t see any necessity to take away the vouching system.”

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Bevington says the proposed act could cause serious problems when people go to vote here in the North.

“People that are manning the polling stations are going to have a lot of very angry people with them because they may have identification but not the proper identification so people that know them standing around at the polling station won’t be able to vouch for them.”

The vouching process happens when one registered voter confirms the identity of another voter who doesn’t have ID.

Opponents of the elections act say all it does is keep people who wouldn’t likely vote for the Conservatives from casting their ballot.

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