Kate Hoey calls for disbanding of 'one-sided' Electoral Commission

The MP says the watchdog should start "over again"

Wednesday, August 7, 2019

Labour MP Kate Hoey has called for the "one-sided" Electoral Commission to be disbanded, after it fined leave campaigner Darren Grimes £20,000.

Brexiteer Ms Hoey described the fine against the BeLeave founder - which was later overturned - as a "travesty of justice" in a video posted by Labour Leave.

She accused the election watchdog of being biased against 25-year-old Grimes by issuing the maximum fine because for ticking "the wrong box" on a form.

Mr Grimes was handed the penalty in 2018, accused of breaching spending rules during the 2016 referendum.

He successfully appealed against the decision last month, which Ms Hoey said raised questions about the way the Electoral Commission worked.

“There’s no doubt about it, if you look at the membership of the Electoral Commission, most of them on it were remainers and I just think it’s not feasible to continue with an Electoral Commission that is so one-sided," she said.

The Vauxhall MP is now calling on Boris Johnson review the regulator.

Ms Hoey continued: “We need a system of some kind monitoring elections but we certainly don’t need the Electoral Commission the way it is at the moment.

“I would be very happy if it was disbanded and they started all over again.”

Ms Hoey, who is pro-leave, recently announced that she would be stepping down as a Labour MP at the next general election.

In conversation with talkRADIO’s Mike Graham, she refused to rule out accepting a job from the Conservative Prime Minister.

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