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On the Ballot

by Enochadmin

Covent Backyard Market through the Westminster election, by Thomas Rowlandson and Augustus Charles Pugin, c.1810. Alamy.

On 18 July 1872 ‘An Act to amend the Legislation regarding Process at Parliamentary and Municipal Elections’ acquired the royal assent. Often known as the ‘Poll Act’, this new legislation remodeled at a stroke the character and observe of British elections, maybe extra radically than another piece of laws earlier than or since. By changing the general public ‘open’ methodology of voting with paper ballots, the Act, declared the federal government, would ‘safe alike the independence of the voter, and the tranquillity and purity of elections’. Its fundamental ideas underlie the process of UK democracy to at the present time.

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