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Lifelong Electoral Entitlement for British Expats?

Whilst political parties here in the UK remain predominantly opposed to the concept of granting life-long voting rights to the British expat community, some campaigners are spearheading their plight amongst UK MPs.


One such peer is Lord Lexden, who is fully engaged and actively making enquiries amongst his House of Lords counterparts, as to just how many of them would support a move toward extending expat voting eligibility for those living overseas.


Right or not, one factor that’s fuelling the fire is that the French are already entitled to vote in their own elections, from wherever they are and regardless of how long they’ve been there, but thanks to Spain-based expat Peter Johnson, an online petition could now upset the state of play.


The plea of many a British expat could now be heard and although 100,000 names are needed to have the point addressed in the House of Commons, the issue is expected to break this barrier and to go on to stir some heated, in-depth debate.


The current and contentious fifteen year cut-off point, which has been the source of debate for far more vote-hungry expats than it has MPs, could soon be amended.  However, those who remain opposed to the plight of the British expat community may have a point, right?


If successful, the changes implemented could see the introduction of an expat voting system similar to that of the French, but not all Brits agree with their way of doing things. Some say that the vote of an expat living overseas shouldn’t impact the lives of inland Brits; some say just the opposite.


Something else to consider is the recent finding that British expats based in France have been adorned with the somewhat enviable moniker of ‘world’s happiest expats’.  It’s uncertain how much joy voting rights will bring, but despite several differences, woman suffrage surely holds some clues.


Whether you’re within or outside UK borders, a wealth of insightful information is available to Brits who would like to learn more about moving abroad, the lifestyle lead by established expats and even the available options surrounding a move back to the UK


By Anthony Standring


Expats Village

For any corrections of factual information contained within our news items please contact our editor.


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