Grayling: Govt must accept cost over prison voting
Justice Minister Chris Grayling has urged the government to "accept the political cost" as it considers the next steps on prisoner voting.
He told the House of Commons:
"The government is under an international law obligation to implement the court judgement... it remains the case that Parliament is sovereign and the human rights act explicitly recognises that fact."
He added: "The constraints upon its exercise by Parliament are ultimately political not legal. But the principle of legality means parliament must squarely confront what it is doing and accept the political cost."
Justice Secretary Chris Grayling has said a joint Commons and Lords committee will consider proposals on prisoner voting, including the option of retaining the ban.
He said: "The leaders of both Houses are writing to the liaison committees proposing that a joint committee of both Houses be appointed to to conduct [the] pre-legislative scrutiny.
"We feel that pre-legislative scrutiny of that nature is appropriate given the significance of this issue and the strong views on both sides of the House."
The draft bill offers MPs three options: allowing prisoners sentenced to less than four years to vote; allowing prisoners sentenced to less than six months to vote; maintaining the current blanket ban.
Herbert 'doubtful' govt will comply over prisoner voting
Nick Herbert, the former minister of state for police and criminal justice, said he was "doubtful" that the three government proposals over prisoner rights will satisfy the requirements of the European Court of Human Rights.
MP @nickherbert - "Doubtful" that 3 govt proposals on prisoners' votes "will comply with what the European Court of Human Rights wants'