Nearly 700,000 people applied to register to vote on Tuesday, as the deadline to take part in next month’s General Election arrived.
It is the largest volume of applications submitted in a single day since registration data was first published in June 2014.
A total of 659,666 applications were submitted, according to Government figures.
This is higher than the 622,398 on deadline day for the 2017 general election, and 485,012 on the equivalent day for the 2015 poll.
A staggering 3.85 million applications have been submitted just since October 29 this year – the day that MPs voted to hold an election on December 12.
Even more significantly, there has also been a massive increase in people registering to vote in the three months before the election since the last election in 2017:
-An increase of 2,181,267 (+56%)
Conservative Party rely on a low turnout to win the election
Of that number, 37% have been submitted by people aged under 25, while 30% have come from people aged 25 to 34.
By contrast, just 4% were from people aged 65 and over.
The unprecedented rush to register could be significant for the election result despite polls which have consistently put the Conservative Party in a position to form a majority government.
The Tory Party are relying on low turnout to form the majority that polls predict.
Boris Johnson is a ‘sinister man’ – ‘Stormzy spike’ of young voters
In a lengthy Twitter and Instagram posts, rapper Stormzy urged people to register to vote before outlining his support for the Labour leader. The Glastonbury headliner who had crowds singing “F*** Boris” posted calls for people to register on social media around 7:13pm on Monday, after which there were huge spikes in registrations.
He also went on to describe the Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, as a “sinister man with a long record of lying and policies that have absolutely no regard for the people that our government should be committed to helping.”
Stormy explained: “I also believe it is criminally dangerous to give the most powerful role in he country to a man who has said that the sight of a “bunch of black kids” makes him “turn a hair”.
Speaking about Corbyn, Stormzy said: “I will be registering to vote and I will be voting for Jeremy Corbyn.”
Other celebrities joined the call for people to register including footballers such as Manchester City star Raheem Sterling.
Does the record voter registration help Labour?
Polls consistently suggest younger voters tend to vote for left wing parties, so the fact that around two-thirds of registrations since the election was announced are under-35 would appear good news for Labour and the Green Party, possibly the Lib Dems too.
Pollsters YouGov found Labour 47 percentage points ahead among first-time voters aged 18 and 19, but among those over 70 the Conservatives were 50 percentage points ahead in the 2017 election.
However, the number of applications to vote is not the same as the number of new people joining the electoral register. They are applications to join the register, which have yet to be approved or rejected. Many register to check whether they are registered or not, so may be already registered to vote.
Also, polls have revealed in previous elections older people are more reliable at turning out to vote, a vote skewed to the right.
Turnout in the last election among 18- and 19-year-olds was just 57%, compared with 84% for the over-70s.
Labour and some of its high-profile supporters did more to push people to register to vote than any other party, social media statistics show.
In the period from the election being called on October 29 to the voter registration deadline on November 26, Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn posted a link to the Government’s voter registration website 26 times on Twitter and 31 times on Facebook.
In contrast, Prime Minister Boris Johnson did not tweet the link or even the word “register” in that time, only sharing it once to Facebook. He also shared information on applying for a postal vote once. PA analysis of figures from Twitter and social monitoring platform Crowdtangle showed the most popular posts linking to voter registration were shared predominantly by pro-Labour or anti-Tory accounts.
This adds to suggestions it is not in the Conservative party’s interest that there is a high turnout on December 12.
Jeremy Corbyn has said that Boris Johnson not asking people to register to vote on Twitter shows “he doesn’t want you to vote in this General Election”. The Labour leader directed a similar criticism towards Liberal Democrat leader Jo Swinson.
Swinson only shared the registration link once to Facebook and Twitter, both on the day of the deadline. SNP Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon shared the link four times to Facebook but not to Twitter. Nigel Farage, the leader of the Brexit Party, has not shared the voter registration link on social media since before the 2016 referendum on EU membership.
2019 Election registration spikes
There was a spike in registration among all age groups on 30 October, the day after MPs gave their backing to a December election.
Out of 177,000 registrations that day, 115,400 were from people aged under 35, according to the government website that tracks registration.
The next big spike came on 12 November, which coincided with a Labour Party Facebook campaign aimed at getting young people to register.
Another was on Friday, when nearly 308,000 registrations were recorded – the same day as BBC One’s Question Time featured Boris Johnson, Jeremy Corbyn, Jo Swinson and Nicola Sturgeon in a two-hour special.
And the so-called ‘Stormzy Spike’ on Monday in the hours after the rapper called on people to vote for someone to lead the country “committed to doing what is right,” causing an enormous 351,000 spike in voter registration.