Monday, November 11, 2013

Prisoner Voting

An interesting proposal here, from Chris Bennett and Daniel Viehoff, is that all prisoners should be allowed to vote in the final election before their release. I think it's one job for us academics to add to the options on the table for policymakers (as well as to then help choose between them) and I think this is an interesting suggestion, though I'm not sure of its practicality. As I put it in my comment: "An interesting proposal, but how do we identify the final general election before their release? Not only might their release date not be certain in advance, but also general elections (in the UK) are not held at fixed intervals but called by the government. If the next general election is in 2015, and we gave everyone due to be released by 2020 a vote in it, what would happen if there was another general election in 2017? Then some of those prisoners enfranchised in 2015 ought not to have been."