Friday, 4 May 2012

Local Elections 2012 - What do they say?

The local elections are always a good time for reflection.  The television media's obsession with predicting General Election results from local elections is fatuous - but it is also clear that the Conservatives have to learn lessons from last night.

Particular highlights for me are the Conservatives gaining a seat in Trumpington, which coincides with the Lib Dems losing overall control in Cambridge.  I hope it serves as a wake up call to the County Liberal Democrats that the deceitful form of politics they are practicing is not good for the residents of our County and also harms them at the ballot box. Julian Huppert, MP for Cambridge City has the most to lose - so he needs to have the loudest voice in making that change; until now he seems to have just been an eager participant.

I was also particularly please to see John Peach re-elected in Park Ward in Peterborough.  John is a great Councillor and a solid, committed Conservative.  I was pleased to be able to do a small bit to help him, but it says something about John that he was able to develop a large team for yesterday and over the campaign itself.

I was interested to hear a couple of people on the media this morning.  The first is William Hague, he makes the point that Labour are gaining less seats in this round of local elections than the Conservatives were gaining under his leadership shortly after Tony Blair came to power.  That suggests that whilst there has been a protest vote against the Government, there is little appetite for Labour.  It will be interesting to see what the turnout is like - I suspect very low..

The other person that was interesting was Tim Montgomerie, editor of Conservative Home.  He made the legitimate comment that the National Party needs to engage better with its grass roots. My own view is much wider than that, national politics in general needs to listen more - all of the major parties are failing utterly miserably in this respect. The impression is increasingly that politics is done to people rather than with them, a continuing failure to deal with this will eventually lead to crisis.  It needs to change.

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