YouGov asking whether people on benefits should be allowed to vote

This year, the UK has rightly been celebrating the centenary of the extension of the right to vote to women. However, fewer citizens are aware that 1918 also marked the abolition of ‘property restrictions’ – but only for men aged over twenty-one.

Before 1918, men – at that time the only ones allowed to vote – had to meet certain qualifications in terms of land or building ownership to qualify for suffrage.

Even though it was abolished for men in 1918, it was imposed on women at the same time – and women faced a further restriction in that only women aged over thirty were enfranchised.

It was only after a further wait of ten years that suffrage was extended to all men and women over the age of twenty-one, with no property qualification.

Conservative commentator Peter Hitchens has famously said that:

hitchens polls

And today, as spotted by Ed Clarke and first reported on the ‘Same Difference’ blog, polling company YouGov has been asking respondents whether voting rights should be withdrawn for UK citizens on benefits:


yougov bens.png

If Peter Hitchens is right, British people should be worrying that the Establishment has taken a first step to shaping public opinion to accept the idea that the disadvantaged in our society should be further deprived of their right and ability to influence the direction of the country with their vote.

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    1. I agree, I am not surprised by this. However, I have to say that I do find this very very scary. All those times the Tories were asking these types of questions about the NHS, I just knew this question was their ultimate goal, so now it is out there, for everyone to see, I ask, is there anyone out there who still thinks they have a reason to vote Tory in the May local elections, because if there are, then I would have a lot of concerns about such people.

  1. Disgraceful; disenfranchising the citizens who are in need of financial assistance in our country would be an assault on our democracy.

    This includes me! As a State Pensioner of 78 years of age, I have been gainfully employed – self-employed from the age of 56, and paid into the pension ‘pot’ until the age of 70.

    As a result of recent tory policies, my state pension is now classified as a state benefit. Surely that means that all citizens in receipt of the state pensions would be unable to vote.

    1. That would wipe out a large number of Tory voters, so I doubt that they will stop you from voting

    2. I would foresee a heavy campaign to pit pensioners against working age benefit recipients. Divide and rule? Always

      1. Already happened, Flo. Still is, today.

        Old vs young
        Strivers vs skivers
        Nationals vs immigrants

        And so on. This is just another method. I was told by a (time-served) QC many years back that sometimes-used trick in court is to ask, say or suggest something that the judge will tell the jury to disregard.

        He told me that; ‘Once done, the seed’s already planted – Don’t think for a moment that that’s the end of it in the jury room just because hizzoner says so!’

        That’s exactly what this question is, but on a grandiose scale.

        The sole difference is there’s no judge to tell us to ‘disregard the question’.

      2. I know, the fragmentation of the victims to engender blaming the next one along has been weaponised for 8 years now. The “otheribg” of the elderly started several years ago with the “gold plated pensions, huge equity, and a free education”, I recall in particular a period of consistent trolling using very particular words in the Guardian comments, twitter etc. Now, you can’t get anyone to take the 30% of pensioners in poverty as important, but it has also meant that the plight of Waspis and many over 60s are now relegated to background noise by far too many. I know many Tories in that age group (the under 68 – 70) who have become Labour voters because of this. Here we come, as they say, Grey and politicised!

  2. They’ve noticed that AI/robotics is going to cost a couple of jobs and they know that at some level of unemployment we’d feed them to their own dogs.
    Just before that is the point of maximum return on investment and is where they’d ideally like to draw the line.

    Knowing how many of us are dumb enough to believe that the unemployed are to blame for unemployment is critical to the success of the project.
    If they get it wrong we vote them out for good by recycling the fuckers so it’s a critical piece of market research.

  3. I cannot believe this is even up for discussion! Horrendous,what is this country coming to? People who have benefits are equal to all others,their right to vote is as valid as any others.

    1. Won’t be published for a few days at least if they’re still polling today

      1. Thank you,could you post a link to it when it is published? Also is it me or has May been spending too much time with Trump,this feels very Trumpian,something he would like to do maybe May is taking a leaf out of his play book!!

      2. Will do if we see it – it might be private polling for a client. Think Cons on either side of the Atlantic have been using the same playbook for a while!

  4. Hitchens – Right or wrong, in my opinion he’s the only commentator/columnist worth listening to. (And I include the odious owen jones in that)

    Meanwhile, I wonder if yougov will include MP’s who claim £5k for heating their stables in that list?

    For example, the immigrant nadim zahawi – founder of yougov- did, after being in receipt of british compassion & generosity since childhood, he’d happily deny others born here, while claiming to have made ‘an oversight’ or an honest mistake in his expenses claims (Like we were born yesterday ffs!)

    You never hear him called an immigrant or scrounger by the daily heil or other rags or fellow tories…strange that, innit?

  5. And that would mean all disabled who can’t work. So their rights (me included) would be reduced even further. How dare they!

  6. Interesting to find out who commisioned this poll. A year or so back, i got rung by IPSOS-MORI for a poll on food additives and labelling which had some dingbat suggestions, so I asked who the sponsor was. Answer I got none. If anyone thinks it might be worth it, an FOI to Yougov might be a starter.

  7. Would this include the rich and powerful with their 1.000 plus tax relief benefits and tax subsidy benefits on practically everything etc. etc. they are subsidised to the hilt – the upper class benefits welfare state worth many, many billions……one rule for one, one rule for the others!
    Someone wondered if this would include Royals but they don’t get a vote and I bet Russian working are really gutted that they will no longer have to know tow to UK elite ‘VIPs’ at the World Football Cup!
    I think we need to change the Narrative on Welfare from Working Class Welfare Bad, Upper Class Welfare Good to the other way round!

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