Undue influence

REPRESENTATION of THE PEOPLE ACT 115 Undue influence. (ex Gov website)

(1)A person shall be guilty of a corrupt practice if he is guilty of undue influence.
(2)A person shall be guilty of undue influence—
(a)if he, directly or indirectly, by himself or by any other person on his behalf, makes use of or threatens to make use of any force, violence or restraint, or inflicts or threatens to inflict, by himself or by any other person, any temporal or spiritual injury, damage, harm or loss upon or against any person in order to induce or compel that person to vote or refrain from voting, or on account of that person having voted or refrained from voting; or
(b)if, by abduction, duress or any fraudulent device or contrivance, he impedes or prevents [F1, or intends to impede or prevent,] the free exercise of the franchise of an elector or proxy for an elector, or so compels, induces or prevails upon [F2, or intends so to compel, induce or prevail upon,] an elector or proxy for an elector either to vote or to refrain from voting.


As so often, in political output, the above is complex and strangely couched. In the final sentence it is established that all the impingements on the mind and body of a voter (or proxy) are proscribed if applied to make an elector ‘vote or not vote’.

At first glance, the Liar Flyer is telling the elector that “The Bogey Man (Brown) will get you unless you vote Conservative.” This does not precisely match the prohibition in the act, as it amounts only to minor terrorism, intended to steer the elector. But a second look shows the threat is specifically aimed at those who might vote for a non-Conservative candidate; it clearly attempts to persuade these individuals to vote Conservative NOT as intended. Clearly, a dual infringement presents as they are coerced both to vote and not vote!

All the above, engaging as it is, becomes academic as the Liar Flyer carries an unequivocal lie, which amounts to a CONTRIVANCE which clearly INTENDS TO PREVAIL UPON the elector. This, without doubt, contravenes the intent of the Act.
Otherwise, what can be its intent?

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