Dublin MEP, Brian Hayes has today (Tuesday) said that voting in future European Elections may be about to get easier. MEP Hayes made the comments following the adoption of a report on the issue in Brussels this week.
“Under the Lisbon Treaty, MEPs have the right to initiate reforms of the European Electoral Act. It is then a matter for each member state to extend these reforms to their citizens. Reforms successfully passed by the Parliament’s Constitutional Affairs Committee this week include the introduction of internet voting as well as voting by post. The reforms also include extending voting rights to EU citizens living outside the EU. “
“Voter turnout has decreased in each European Election. The first elections took place in 1979 with a 62% voter turnout. Last year only 42.6% voted. It is clear that something needs to be done to encourage voter participation.”
“We need to find new ways to enable citizens to vote, especially our younger and older citizens. Some countries such as Estonia have already introduced internet voting for their national elections so precedence already exists.”
“The report will now go before a plenary session of Parliament where it is expected to be passed by a large majority” concluded MEP Hayes.