Jeremy Corbyn has accused the UK Government of a “blatant attempt to rig” the next General Election by planning to introduce new ID rules that he insists would hit the poorest voters the hardest.

One of the planned measures in the Queen’s Speech – which has 26 bills, half of which would have an impact on Scotland - focuses on “electoral integrity” to tackle voting fraud and protect democracy.

The proposed, and as yet unnamed, legislation would require voters to show some approved photographic ID - a driving licence or passport, for example - to enable them to vote in a General Election. It would also require people who used postal votes to re-apply to do so every three years; currently, registration can last indefinitely.

HeraldScotland: Camley's cartoon: Her Majesty used to promote Conservative manifesto.Camley's cartoon: Her Majesty used to promote Conservative manifesto.

But the Labour leader said: “These plans are clearly discriminatory and a blatant attempt by the Tories to suppress voters, deny people their democratic rights and rig the result of the next General Election.

“The people that the Tories are trying to stop voting will be disproportionately from ethnic minority backgrounds and they will disproportionately be working class voters of all ethnicities,” declared Mr Corbyn ahead of a visit today to the Black Cultural Archives in London to mark Black History Month.

The Labour leader insisted the Government plan was to "shut down democracy...by making it harder for people to vote".

Earlier during Commons exchanges he claimed: "It is designed to hit the poorest the hardest; those who do not have passports or access to other forms of identity, and who will thus lose their right to vote and decide who governs in the future.”

However, the UK Government dismissed Labour’s claim out of hand.

Boris Johnson’s spokesman insisted it was right to take “proportionate and reasonable steps” to increase ballot security, pointing out how electoral observers had repeatedly called for the introduction of voter ID at British polling stations and since 2003 people in Northern Ireland had been using photo ID “without any impact on the number of people who vote”.

James Cleverley, the Conservative Chairman, noted: “Jeremy Corbyn is yet again sowing the seeds of division. If anything, tougher checks against electoral fraud will protect the democratic rights of all communities.”

Of the 26 bills in the Queen’s Speech, five, including the EU Withdrawal Agreement Bill and ones on fisheries and agriculture, should Boris Johnson clinch a deal this week with Brussels, cover Brexit.

Alistair Jack, the Scottish Secretary, described the Government programme as a "bold and ambitious legislative agenda, which will make a real difference to the lives of people in Scotland".

But Michael Russell, the Scottish Government’s Constitutional Affairs Secretary, stressed while Edinburgh would continue to express views on Brexit legislation, it would not lodge legislative consent motions, so-called Sewel motions, “until we can be assured the decisions of the Scottish Parliament will be respected”.

In 2017, the UK Supreme Court ruled Sewel motions were just a political convention and so did not bind the UK Government.

The main thrust of the Queen’s Speech was a crackdown on crime with other main measures on what the PM terms the “people’s priorities” on health and education.

The seven bills relating to crime and justice south of the border include ones to keep serious criminals in prison for longer, impose tougher sentences on foreign offenders who return to the UK and provide better protection for victims of domestic abuse.

Other measures also include raising living standards through increasing the national living wage to £10.50 an hour.

However, because the Government no longer has a parliamentary majority, when MPs vote next week on the Queen’s Speech following six days of debate, it looks certain to lose. No 10 made clear if he lost the vote, the PM would not resign but would seek to persuade the Commons to support the merits of his programme on a bill by bill basis.

Labour’s Dame Margaret Beckett denounced the Government’s programme as a “sham Queen's Speech,” noting: “We all know that what the Government wants is an election tomorrow."

Jo Swinson, the Liberal Democrat leader, insisted Mr Johnson’s legislative agenda was a “charade” while the TUC's Frances O'Grady dismissed it as a “political stunt".

In the Commons chamber, the PM, stressing how he wanted to govern as a “One Nation Conservative,” set out a vision of a “balanced, just and fair society,” a global and free-trading Britain, that was the “greatest place on earth”.

But Mr Corbyn dismissed the Queen’s Speech as a “propaganda exercise,” which amounted to nothing more than “fool’s gold”.

Ian Blackford, the SNP’s Westminster leader, denounced the “narrow ideology of the Brexit fan boys who sit on the Government benches” and dismissed Mr Johnson’s comment about making Britain the greatest place on earth to live as being “straight out of the Trump playbook”.