Birmingham is as bad as Chicago when it comes to electoral fraud, a leading city councillor has claimed.
Deirdre Alden said publicity from the recent hearings into ballot rigging in Aston and Bordesley Green, where a high court judge likened Birmingham to a banana republic, was damaging the city.
"We are called vote-fraud city. Our city is as synonymous with fraud as Chicago and our name is being dragged through the mud," she told a meeting of the full city council.
Councillors urged the Government to adopt the Electoral Commission's recommendations for making the voting system more secure, including introducing comprehensive checks on the identity of applicants for postal votes.
An election court in Birmingham earlier this year uncovered widespread postal vote fraud across the city.
Richard Mawrey QC, the election commissioner, said he was satisfied corruption was extensive.
In a summary of his judgement, Mr Mawrey said: "I was forced to conclude that Bordesley Green and Aston were not isolated incidents but were part of a Birmingham-wide campaign by the Labour Party to try, by the use of bogus postal votes, to counter the adverse effect of the Iraq war on its electoral fortunes."