Fianna Fáil Press Office
Cllr Cormac Devlin
05 February 2016
Young people disenfranchised by short election – Devlin
Short election campaign allows only six days for new voters to register
Fianna Fáil candidate in Dún Laoghaire Cllr Cormac Devlin maintains that the short election campaign is effectively disenfranchising young voters.
“Enda Kenny’s insistence on minimising the duration of the election campaign has had the effect of giving young voters only a few days to apply for inclusion on the supplementary register.
“Tuesday is the closing date for applications for entry onto the supplementary register of electors. This is because the supplementary register closes 15 days before polling day, not counting Sundays.
“The government should have given additional time for people to be included on the supplementary register given the unprecedented shortness of this campaign. Young people should not be excluded from inclusion on the electoral list just because Fine Gael strategists want to minimise scrutiny of their broken promises and poor performance in government by keeping the election period as short as possible.
“At the very least, the postal and special voters list should remain open for the same amount of time as the main supplementary register. It is absurd that a person with a disability can be included in the supplementary register on Tuesday, but cannot receive a postal or special vote if they did not register for that four days earlier.
“This policy will disenfranchise young disabled people in particular. These are the very people who have suffered most at the hands of the current government and they deserve the same chance to make their voice heard at the ballot box as everyone else. Everything possible should be done to facilitate them in registering, but instead they are being blatantly discriminated against.”