THE UK Government is accused of trying to "alter the electorate in their favour" after it emerged that millions of people who will need ID in order to vote have not applied for the document. 

Under the Conservatives' new laws, people will need to show photographic ID in order to vote in elections in England, and UK-wide in any General Elections after October 2023.

However, government research has found that up to two million people currently lack photo ID that has a recognisable picture of them.

Of these, only 10,000 (0.5%) have applied for the document, according to The Guardian. This figure covers the first two weeks of the government scheme to provide the free documentation.

At the current rate, just 60,000 more people will have applied by the deadline of April 25, meaning more than 1.9 million could be barred from voting in England's local elections. 

The launch was partnered with a campaign to inform people about the new voting laws.

Both Labour and SNP MPs described the scheme as being “rushed” and “shambolic”.

SNP’s home affairs spokesperson Alison Thewliss MP said the UK Government were attempting voter suppression with “Trump-esque” tactics and advised Tories to follow the Scottish Parliament's lead in delivering voting rights to 16 and 17 year olds.

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She said: “This has been rushed out, all with little to no advertisement to suit the Tories desperate desires to alter the electorate in their favour. These numbers make it crystal clear the Tories haven’t done enough to inform people of these changes, and that their dodgy strategy is working.

"This Trump-esque suppression of the vote to disenfranchise the poorest in society is a disgrace and a further stain on the democracy the Tories seem all too eager to strip back and taint.

“The SNP Scottish Government has done the opposite, instead increasing the franchise to deliver full voting rights in Scottish elections to 16 and 17 year olds, refugees and foreign nationals with leave to remain.

“The Tories would do well to follow in that lead if they have a shred of respect for the right to vote and basic democratic principles.”

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Labour MP and shadow minister for elections Alex Norris described the scheme’s rollout as a “complete and utter shambles and reeks of government incompetence” with the Tories as having their “priorities all wrong” in the cost of living crisis.

Norris added: “Not only is the Tory voter ID plan completely unworkable, it is unnecessary and set to lock millions of people out of voting.”

An Electoral Commission spokesperson said the initial statistics showed it was “encouraging that people are already aware of the voter authority certificate and are applying early”.

A UK Government spokesperson said that they were “pleased that so many people have applied within the first two weeks and will continue to work with the Electoral Commission to ensure all voters are aware of the new requirement".