Sabotaging Tories Totnes nomination – who wins?

Totnes Centre
Image by street_spirit909 via Flickr

The Conservative Association in Totnes have decided to run what is effectively a British version of the American Nomination system for their prospective parliamentary candidate. As so often when ideas from the US are brought over to the UK, they are a watered down and less effective version, but that aside, it is an attempt by a political party to be more responsive to the electorate, as was the case with the nomination process which eventually saw Boris Johnson become the London Mayor.

The issues of Steen, the previous candidate and his crass comments about people being jealous of him may well have driven Tory Central Office to foist the nomination election on to the local party, but for whatever reason, it is at least a step in the right direction.

Unfortunately the sour side of British Politics has reared its ugly head, in the form of the local Labour party and the Liberal Democrats, who have both indicated that they are considering what they like to term ‘mischievous’ tactical voting.

The idea of this is that because the Tories have opened the vote to all of the electorate in the constituency, they are in a position to sway voting so that the ‘worst’ candidate wins the nomination.

To the Politico jamboree this may all sound like a smart move, as theoretically it will make it harder for the Tories to win the seat at the election, but to many people outside the circus tent, this is yet another indication of the vacuous state of British mainstream politics.

While opposition party organisers are seeking to sabotage a democratic election on a short term strategic decision, what happens if the ‘worst’ candidate wins not only the nomination, but also the election to Parliament, who is the winner? The Labour unelected candidate, the Lib/Dem unelected candidate, the people ofTotnes, the people in the UK? No, the only winner is the PR machine for the Labour and Lib/Dem machines.

Assuming that the Labour and Lib/Dems can actually identify a weak candidate, why on earth do they wish this person to potentially become their elected representative?

The continual opposition bashing across all of the major parties and increasingly seen in smaller political affiliations, serves no-one. It sounds like a bunch of children in a playground blaming each other when they are caught late for class by the Head Master.

If they could spend as much effort in not only putting forward their policies plans and objectives, as they do in telling everyone why the other parties are not right, the electorate may feel some form of engagement.

Would any Politico actually buy a product from a salesman who refused to tell them anything about the product they were interested in finding out about, but expounding why every other product was rubbish? I doubt it, so why do they think that their PR machine should be any different?

We hear continual bleats from all the parties about what happened 30 years ago, what relevance does this have. 30 years ago the only personal computers you could purchase, had tiny memories, were slow and unreliable, do we judge computer purchases on that basis now? Bill Gates is still at Microsoft, but obviously he and his company couldn’t have changed in the intervening 30 years, could they? While busy knocking views from years ago, these same politicians wish us to believe they have all changed their attitude to abusing expenses, within a matter of weeks of being found out, isn’t that wanting to have their cake and eat it?

For a politician to change their mind and develop an idea, is jumped on by opposition political camps and the Westminster media tribe, as a sign of weakness, what absolute rubbish.

Let Lib/Dems and Labour party activists have their vote in the Totnes Tory nomination election, but please, shut up.

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