Scotland Bill — Clause 1 — Administration of Elections — Start Counting Within Four Hours of Polls Closing — 7 Mar 2011 at 17:45
The majority of MPs voted against requiring Scottish Ministers to order returning officers to start counting votes for elections to the Scottish Parliament within four hours of polls closing.
MPs were considering the Scotland Bill. The amendment rejected in this vote was:
- Amendment 10, page 1, line 22, at end insert—
- ‘(3A) After subsection (2) there is inserted—
- (2A) The first order made by Scottish Ministers under subsection (1)(a) must include the application to Scottish Parliamentary general elections of the terms of paragraph (3A) of Rule 45 (the count) and Rule 53ZA (counting of votes: statement by returning officer) in Schedule 1 to the Representation of the People Act 1983.”’.
This would have affected clause 1 of the Bill which, by amending Section 12 of the Scotland Bill 1998, provided for the devolution of powers to administer elections of members of the Scottish Parliament to Scottish Ministers.
The additional requirement which was rejected as a result of this vote would have required Scottish Ministers to base their order for details of how the count is to be run and what the returning officer's statement of results is required to contain on the provisions of the Representation of the People Act 1983 as amended. Those provisions include the following requirements:
- The returning officer shall take reasonable steps to begin counting the votes given on the ballot papers as soon as practicable within the period of four hours starting with the close of the poll.
- Returning officers who do not start counting within the statutory time period must provide a report to the Electoral Commission explaining why they did not do so
-  Parliament's webpage on the Scotland Bill (now an Act)
-  Clause 1 of the Scotland Bill as at the time of the vote
Votes by party, red entries are votes against the majority for that party.
What is Tell? '+1 tell' means that in addition one member of that party was a teller for that division lobby.
What are Boths? An MP can vote both aye and no in the same division. The boths page explains this.
What is Turnout? This is measured against the total membership of the party at the time of the vote.
|Party||Majority (No)||Minority (Aye)||Both||Turnout|
|Con||254 (+2 tell)||1||0||84.0%|
|Lab||0||194 (+2 tell)||0||76.0%|
|Eleanor Laing||Epping Forest||Con (front bench)||aye|