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Voting is checked
3:42pm Thursday 24th May 2012 in Your Letters
I FEEL I must respond to the letter written by Mr Mackenzie to the last issue, who raised concerns regarding the security of the postal vote system.
Each and every postal vote that is returned to Trafford Council has the signature on the form checked personally by a council officer to ensure that it corresponds with the signature on the original postal vote application.
Similarly, the ballot papers are enveloped separately and kept face-down on opening to ensure that nobody at all can identify a person’s returned ballot paper.
Only ballot papers which are returned in the same envelope as a correctly-signed form are counted.
Therefore a voter would have sign their form and physically hand their ballot paper to someone else for it to be mis-used, and that ballot paper then placed in the return envelope with the correctly-signed form, which would be impossible without the active co-operation of the voter in question.
While I personally prefer voting at a polling station, I would contend that it is far easier for a miscreant to obtain someone’s polling card and turn up at a polling station to use someone else’s vote, than it would be for them to tinker with a postal vote.
All voting systems require a certain element of trust and I am personally confident that, in Trafford at least, the checks and balances are such that any electoral fraud would be extremely difficult to achieve.
Cllr Rob Chilton, St Mary’s Ward