Mistrustful of authorities, ‘Leave’ voters urged to #UsePens

The New York Times reports: As voters continue to cast their ballots in Thursday’s referendum, several Twitter users supporting the campaign for Britain to leave the European Union were giving unusual advice to their counterparts: use pens.

The instructions, written with the #usepens hashtag, appeared to be driven by fears that politicians, led by Prime Minister David Cameron, as well as the electoral authorities and civil servants would seek to change the result if voters supported a withdrawal from the European Union.

Polling sites are organized by local councils, and one north of London urged voters to use pencils — which are supplied in individual polling booths — because pens could cause ballots to be spoiled. The advice was met with skepticism. [Continue reading…]

ChronicleLive reports: Gateshead voter Anthony Cummings said he was shocked to find only pencils at the polling station in Felling, Gateshead .

He said: “I refuse to use a pencil, I asked someone and thankfully they were able to lend me a pen so I could cast my vote.

“I think it would be so easy for them to rub it out, it should be in ink, I am 54 years old and this is the most important vote of my lifetime. I am sure I have used a pen every other election.” [Continue reading…]

(English to American translation: “rubbers” means erasers.)

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