Commonwealth Clause

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Commonwealth Clause refers to a residency requirement for voting in Britain and some of its former colonies which enfranchises recently arrived non-citizen legal residents. While most countries limit the franchise to citzens, only 52% of former British colonies do so. Commonwealth clauses are found in Australia, Barbados, Belize, Guyana, Jamaica, St. Lucia, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Trinidad and Tabago, and Britain itself. Ireland also extends the right to vote to citizens of Britain though not to other members of the British Commonwealth.


References

  • Louis Massicotte, Andre Blais and Antoine Yoshinaka. 2004. Establishing the Rules of the Game: Election Laws in Democracies. Toronto: University of Toronto Press. Pp. 28-29. ISBN 0802085644.