Friday, 5 June 2009

Post Election Thoughts

What an election day that was. Nationally the news was about cabinet ministers resigning and how long desperate Gordon Brown can go on. Locally the press was much kinder to the Labour party with puff pieces about Reading Station and today asking the retiring MP to stay on (its nice to have friends)!

The polling booths opened at 7am, we had people sitting outside them in Park ward all day, normally every polling station has activists outside but on this day; no. There have also been very few posters from the other parties, some are saying its due to the expenses scandal. Others say that the big parties aren't taking the Euro Election seriously, or that they are having a stealthy campaign as they're scared of a brick through the window.

We had people canvassing, knocking on doors, leafleting and campaigning all day. We are lucky to have such a brilliant team, led by our target candidate Rob White who has been a tower of strength.

My role was to input data into spreadsheets, so I was stuck inside most of the day. Fortunately someone took over from me eventually so I could get some food, knocked on some doors, before getting back onto a computer. The polls closed at 10pm, it was a very long day, but it was it worth it.

Many of the voters were dissatisfied with the big three parties, and some are turning to the Greens. The big three parties seemed very quiet, perhaps embarrassed by the antics of their MPs expenses being revealed in the press. This is expected to result in a low turnout in some areas, it could reach a new low of 25%; though interest in politics has rarely been so high.

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