Just how grim can it get up north? (Actually, it's quite nice.) One woman's not-so-lonely journey into the Northern heartlands.
Thursday, May 01, 2008
The black hand gang
I did it. I am only surprised my hand did not blacken, shrivel and drop off in the polling booth - I voted Tory. There may be some election thingy going on in the US, the metro-centric nationals may be drenched in Boris versus Ken but here in the real world, there is an election for a new unitary authority for Northumberland and I had to vote Tory. Yeah Gods. Just to remind me my friend had scattered big posters throughout his "division" with his name and the word Conservatives in big white letters on a blue and green background. He might as well have had the words "Remember - you promised" on them. I did promise and I have advised him on his electioneering leaflets etc as I said I would, but God - friendship has a price. He has had quite an interesting strategy of not asking anyone for their vote on the doorstep - I wonder if this could catch on? He believes that householders do not want a stranger with a rosette begging for their vote when they are trying to watch Emmerdale. He was prepared to deliver countless leaflets and to traipse round, introducing himself but not to directly and explicitly ask for a vote. In fact, having spent some years reporting on politics, I have to say it was really quite strange advising someone who has played such a straight game all round and insisted on saying only what he believes. But then, he is entirely new to the political process.
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I was impressed that you said he didn't ask for votes or knock on doors so I went to his blog and saw two posts enitled "Vote for me" and "Doorstep musings". Too funny!
Our local councillor who is/was up for re-election actually asked my husband not to vote for him, yesterday. They do seem to be employing strange tactics - some sort of new tactical voting maybe?
Wifey, I hate to load guilt on you, but don't tell your children. My mother was a staunch Labour supporter (she once stopped the car on the way to school and got one of us to jump out and stick a red "Vote Labour" sticker on the nose of a picture of the Tory candidate - he had the largest majority in the country, so it was symbolic rather than anything else). Then a friend stood as a Tory in the local elections, and she voted for him, and I couldn't, just couldn't, understand why. I thought she'd abandoned all her ideals. I've hardly recovered to this day.
How can you vote Tory? they are pure evil in all forms...
I think one of the many things that differ between the UK and the US voting-wise is that you don't necessarily vote for the person or party you want to get elected, sometimes you have to vote strategically. Where I grew up in North Yorkshire neither dominant party was the party I felt most allied to, so I had to vote for the Libs in order to get the Tories out, so that the Tories would do less well against Labour in the general election. I think you have to be a Brit to understand that logic!!!
At least you got to vote for a person you knew and liked!
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