MP’s Column

I was witness to a ‘Leave or Remain’ debate in the Debating Square at Mounts Bay Academy on Friday. It is fair to say that the students had carefully researched their arguments and were more factual and convincing than many of the arguments that we have been subjected to in the run-up to the referendum.

Most people will know by now that the EU Referendum takes place on Thursday June 23rd. However, a date that is fast approaching that many may not be aware of, is the last date an eligible voter can register to vote in the EU Referendum. This is Tuesday 7th June.

Some suggest that 1.9m people had been dropped from the voting register when a new system was introduced in December. The new system, ‘Individual Registration’, has been introduced in order to tackle fraud. There is a national campaign currently running to ensure people understand the changes to the system and register to vote before June 7th.

On a related matter I have received a number of complaints from people stating that only the main householder has received a poll card from Cornwall Council. The Council’s web-site clearly states that ‘A poll card will be sent to you, provided you are registered and eligible to vote in that election.’ I’m looking into this on behalf of those who have contacted me.

You can vote without a poll card at a polling station but it is very important that you check that you are registered to vote. Electoral registration can now be done online at www.gov.uk/register-to-vote. If you prefer to complete a paper application, please contact Cornwall Council to request one.

An Objective Guide to the UK’s Membership of the European Union, produced by a member of staff in my Westminster office, is now available. This primarily addresses the many questions and comments I have received via email and via my Facebook page. For an electronic copy please email me derek.thomas.mp@parliament.uk or write to my Penzance office at the Wharfside Shopping Centre TR18 2GB if you prefer a paper copy.

Please don’t forget to register to vote before June 7th.

Derek Thomas
Member of Parliament for St Ives