A CONSERVATIVE MP has been hamstrung by his party's own voter ID laws after he forgot his identification at his polling station. 

Tom Hunt, who represents Ipswich, voted consistently for restrictive voter ID laws which opponents say will restrict the franchise

He has been forced to use an emergency proxy vote for Thursday’s local elections after the blunder, which he blamed on his dyspraxia. 

Voters are required to present certain forms of ID to take part in Thursday’s local, mayoral, and police and crime commissioner polls.

This is because of the Elections Act 2022, a law change first put to the test during the May 2023 local elections.

Acceptable forms of ID listed in the act include a passport, driving licence, Proof of Age Standards Scheme (Pass) cards, Blue Badges and some concessionary travel cards.

READ MORE: Voter ID leads to hundreds turned away in Rutherglen by-election

Hunt said: “I don’t want to blame everything on my dyspraxia, but it’s a factor in my life I have to deal with."

People whose ID has been lost, stolen or damaged can apply for an emergency proxy vote until 5pm on polling day, allowing someone else to vote on their behalf.

Hunt said he had not previously been aware of this provision, but had applied for an emergency proxy vote, saying it is “the system working well”.

One form of ID that is not accepted at polling stations is the veteran ID card, introduced at the start of this year.

Veterans minister Johnny Mercer issued an apology via social media site Twitter/X after reports emerged of a former soldier unable to use their veteran card at a polling station.

READ MORE: Could voter ID impact marginal seats?

“I am sorry about this,” Mercer wrote in response to a post from someone who had been turned away from a polling station after presenting their card.

He added: “The legislation on acceptable forms of ID came out before the veteran ID cards started coming out in January this year. I will do all I can to change it before the next one.”

Both Hunt and Mercer voted for the voter ID scheme when it was before the Commons.

According to Parliament’s voting records, they also voted to reject a Lords amendment aimed at widening the forms of acceptable identification to include workplace ID, library cards, bank statements and an array of other documents.

An investigation by the Electoral Commission suggested around 14,000 people – 0.25% of voters – did not vote in last year’s local elections after being unable to show an accepted form of photo ID at their polling station.

A similar study will be carried out this year, the Commission has confirmed.