Ban on 'National' parties

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The Independent Online
THE QUEEN'S head has been banned from the euro note. Now her name is to be outlawed from politics.

The Government is planning to publish a list of nearly 30 words which political parties cannot use in their names. They include all royal words, such as King, Queen, Duke, Prince and Her Majesty, and patriotic words like British, English, Scottish and National.

The word "independent" is to be forbidden because the Government believes it gives the wrong impression of partisan politicians. Parties could even be banned from calling themselves "democratic" under the new rules.

The level of detail has amazed some party officials and infuriated others. Under the regulations - which will not apply to existing names - titles such as the Scottish National Party, the National Front and the British National Party would be illegal.

The rules are being introduced as part of the Registration of Political Parties Bill, designed to prevent voter confusion. The aim of the legislation is to stop people mas-querading as candidates for official parties by calling themselves something similar, such as Literal rather than Liberal Democrat.

The banned words are: Duke, Duchess, Her Majesty, His Majesty, King, Prince, Princess, Queen, Royal, Royalty, Britain, British, Democratic, England, English, Independent, Ireland, Irish, National, Northern Ireland, Northern Irish, Unofficial, Scotland, Scottish, Wales, Welsh.

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