Petition Allow all British citizens to vote should there be a new referendum on Brexit.

When the referendum on leaving the EU took place in 2016, a large number of British Citizens were not allowed to register their vote for a series of reasons laid down by the government. Obviously this matter affects ALL British citizens equally, therefore they should all have an equal right to vote

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British citizens living abroad for more than 15 years can’t vote.
I was one of the 700,000 British people denied a vote in the first EU referendum – that's why we need another Brexit vote

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Government responded

This response was given on 10 April 2019

The Government has been clear we will not hold a second referendum. There are no set rules about who can vote in referendums in the UK, which are determined by the legislation for each referendum.

The Government has been clear that it will not hold a second referendum. A majority of the electorate voted to leave the European Union at the 2016 referendum. We must respect the democratic process which delivered that result.

There are no set rules about who can vote in a nationwide referendum in the UK. Instead, the franchise for each referendum is determined by the legislation for the referendum on a case-by-case basis.

The franchise for the referendum in 2016 was determined by the European Union Referendum Act 2015. The terms of the franchise set out in the Act were scrutinised and debated in Parliament during its passage and agreed by both the House of Commons and the House of Lords.

Parliament rejected proposals to create a bespoke franchise that included British citizens who had lived overseas for more than 15 years. However, in accordance with the franchise for UK Parliamentary elections, British citizens who had been resident overseas for less than 15 years and had previously registered to vote in the UK were permitted to vote.

In accordance with the Fixed-term Parliaments Act 2011, the next General Election is scheduled for 2022. Ahead of the that election, the Government is committed to removing the arbitrary rule that disenfranchises UK nationals who have lived abroad for more than 15 years from participating in UK parliamentary elections.

Cabinet Office

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