A Potential Legal challenge could delay EU referendum vote for months

A GROUP which has campaigned for the UK to vote to leave the European Union has said it will launch a legal challenge that could result in the referendum being put back until October 23.

Leave.EU, the organisation headed by Aaron Banks, has said it will apply for a judicial review of the Electoral Commission's decision to award lead campaign status to its rival, Vote Leave.

The decision means that Vote Leave, and the remain campaign Britain Stronger in Europe, will each be allowed to spend up to £7m on campaigning, receive a free distribution of information to voters and be able to make referendum campaign broadcasts.

If successful in obtaining a judicial review of the Electoral Commission's decision, the referendum could be pushed back to October 23, to enable a 10-week campaigning period.

Mr Banks said: “It is to be regretted that this process may put the referendum back until October but if we are to avoid the most important vote of our lives being rigged then I feel duty bound to take this course of action.”

He is taking legal action because he believes there were "a number of judgements according to the Electoral Commission’s own criteria that do not make sense".

Mr Banks added: "The tweeting by Steve Bell, the Chairman of the Conservative Party Convention, that Vote Leave had been given the designation the night before of the official announcement smells of political corruption from our high-minded establishment and cannot be allowed to pass without challenge."

Leave.EU has subsequently said it has consulted with lawyers and announced it will make a decision about "whether or not to proceed" with a judicial review application by noon on Thursday.

Posted: Thu 14 Apr 2016
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