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Political Parties and Elections

Government Bill

Originated in the House of Commons, Sessions 2007-08, 2008-09

Last updated: 16 October 2009 at 12:52

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Long title

To make provision in connection with the Electoral Commission; and to make provision about political donations and expenditure and about elections.


The Bill makes some amendments to the regulation of party funding and election expenditure that is set out in the Political Parties, Elections and Referendums Act 2000. It will cover the whole of the UK. The Bill aims to:
  • strengthen the regulatory powers of the Electoral Commission, to provide new powers of investigation and the option of civil sanctions
  • enable political parties to put forward four extra Electoral Commissioners and relax political restrictions on staff of the Commission
  • alter the definition of ‘election expenses’ and ‘candidate’ in the Representation of the People Act 1983 to take into account spending on elections prior to the dissolution of Parliament
  • place further requirements on parties and donors to clarify the source of donations
  • amend the Representation of the People Act to provide a more flexible system for adding to the register of electors when an election is called while the register is being updated – the canvass period.

Sponsoring departments

Ministry of Justice
Mr Jack Straw
Labour, Blackburn
Ministry of Justice
Lord Bach
Labour, Life peer

Current version of the Bill

Political Parties and Elections Act 2009 c.12
21 July 2009

Bill passage

Bill started in the House of Commons
1st reading
2nd reading
Committee stage
Report stage
3rd reading
Bill in the House of Lords
1st reading
2nd reading
Committee stage
Report stage
3rd reading
Final stages
Consideration of amendments
Royal Assent
In progress
Not applicable
Not yet reached