Scope of the inquiry
Many of the core elements of the law regulating election campaigns in parliamentary constituencies and local authority wards have not been updated since the nineteenth century. Recent prosecutions and investigations have demonstrated that even many experts are confused about how the law should be applied in practice to modern election campaigns.
The DCMS Committee inquiry into “Disinformation and ‘Fake News’” described how the regulation of political campaigns has not kept pace with the development of digital technology.
In 2016, the non-political Law Commissions published a comprehensive set of recommendations for simplifying and updating electoral law, but the Government has declined to implement them, citing lack of time. The Government has, however, made several proposals for further piecemeal reforms and additions to electoral law.
PACAC is therefore asking how urgent comprehensive reform is, what should be prioritised, and whether there is a need to go beyond the Law Commission’s proposals?
Terms of reference