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Harper government agrees to major changes to Elections Act overhaul

OTTAWA (NEWS1130) – The Conservative government is announcing a major climbdown on its proposed overhaul of election rules with a series of amendments that will remove many of the most contentious aspects of the bill.

Pierre Poilievre, the minister for democratic reform, revealed the proposed changes at a news conference today.

Poilievre says his government is prepared to remove the requirement for all voters to show residency identification in the next election.

Poilievre said citizens will now be able to sign an oath attesting to their local residence, but must still provide at least some proof of personal identification.

A move to allow partisan appointments of central polling supervisors is being dropped from the elections bill, as is a restriction on how the chief electoral officer can communicate with Canadians.

The government is also removing a provision that would have allowed parties to contact former donors during election periods without incurring an election expense under their campaign cap.