§ 17. Mr. DIXEY
asked the Home Secretary whether he is aware that, owing to their occupation, thousands of commercial travellers are unable to vote on election days, and that there is considerable dissatisfaction caused thereby: and whether he will consider introducing legislation to enable them to vote by proxy?
§ Sir W. JOYNSON-HICKS
I am told that in some cases commercial travellers have experienced difficulty in voting at Parliamentary elections, but I do not think there is need for legislation. In my opinion commercial travellers, as well as other classes of electors who are likely to be away from home at a Parliamentary election, are entitled to the benefit of Rule 16 in Schedule I to the Representation of the People Act, 1918, which enables electors in such circumstances to claim to be placed on the absent voters list so that they may vote by post, and the information in my Department is that Registration Officers ordinarily act on this view. Each claim under the Rule, however, has to be decided by the Registration Officer according to the circumstances of the particular case; in some cases I believe decisions adverse to electors have been reversed on appeal to the County Court.