Monday, May 09, 2005

Done and dusted

Well, the whole thing is well and truly over now. Even the other election bloggers are returning to politics as normal and its time for this one to shut down.

It's been a real pleasure to write this over the last few months so much so that i'm actually finding it hard to let go of it! I think we'll see more of this type of thing at the next election and I for one look forward to it.

For now, i'm taking a week off work, not watching any (well too much) news and taking a short break from the whole political thing. I'll be back with a new blog (and maybe with a couple of other people too) soon enough. If you want to know more, keep in touch or just say hi until the new blog goes live you can contact me at at

Take care people, see you soon.



Friday, May 06, 2005

Tory leader runners and riders

Much has been made about the tussles for power within the Labour party between Blair and Brown. Even more has been made about the supposed deal made again and again between the two about Brown succeeding Blair if and when the latter steps down. Something that is now coming into view is the fight for the Tory leadership. Not much has been made about this but with Michael Howard announcing his intention to step down I’m sure we’ll see more.

Having talked to someone close to the Tory party (someone who in fact knows three frontbenchers well) the rumour is that Howard will change the voting rules for the leadership contests so that the Parliamentary party will have greater say (William Hague changed the rules to allow all Tory party members one member one vote to decide its leader) before stepping down. If he achieves this he’ll be likely to step down just before Christmas which is around the time I actually think Blair will go!

Anyway, the BBC has an article about the current state of play within the Tory party and who might go for the top job.

“Tory leader Michael Howard has announced he is to stand down following his party's election defeat in order to allow a younger leader to take over.

Speculation about who will take over the Conservative leadership has begun, with bookmakers William Hill already offering 3/1 odds on the shadow home secretary David Davis.” Link

Five things Tony Blair should learn from the election

If only...Blair strikes me as someone who doesn't really care that much what others think only how they'll react to what he does.

"1. Labour wins when it governs from the centre. Tony Blair has made history, winning an unprecedented third Labour term, by worrying about middle England as well as the party's heartland supporters.

2. Iraq hurt: don't invade countries just because you don't like their regimes. It wasn't only the chattering classes who cared about the war. Despite what Mr Blair's advisers tell him, it isn't just a Guardian obsession.

3. Labour needs a smooth succession. Mr Blair must sit down with Gordon Brown and agree on when he should stand down. They should wait until at least after the referendum on the EU constitution.

4. People still don't like the Tories. The party's 33% share of the vote is not much of an improvement on its scores from 1997 and 2001. Despite Labour's much reduced majority, the government party can win a fourth term.

5. Our election system needs changing. It can't be fair that the Liberal Democrats won 22% of the vote but only 10% of the parliamentary seats. Surely Mr Blair can see the opportunity of creating a long-lasting progressive majority by introducing proportional representation." Link


Just got in from the ICA election event! I'm far too tired (and yes, drunk!) to give any coherent opinion on the night thus far save to say that there have been a few surprises. Stephen Twigg losing his seat being the one that take me by surprise but anyway click here for the full results and here for some general reports and updates.

Thursday, May 05, 2005

Late change of plans

Looks like the office thing has fallen through so now we're off to some bar to watch the results come in. If you're in town and want to join us we'll be here! I've just heard that Blink will be doing some live stuff throughout the night so keeping an eye there would be good, also if i'm not too drunk I'll and post my thoughts when I get home later.

Britain's voters heading to polls

So...I voted and now begins the long wait until this evening. Work are having an informal get together with a wide screen TV and Playstation 2 on hand until the results show starts. Because i'll probably be here until 2 in the morning expect an entry or two!

"Voting is under way in the UK general election after a 30-day campaign.

Polls remain open in 645 constituencies until 2200 BST, with the first results due at 2345. It will not be clear who has won until early on Friday. " Link

Wednesday, May 04, 2005

OBV's General Election 2005

Just up on the Operation Black Vote site is a timely look back over our election campaigning. Every picture speaks volumes and has a hundred stories behind them! Enjoy!

Election battle nears its climax

Their battle ends and our job begins...

“The final dash for votes is on in the last hours of election campaigning for the political parties.

Labour leader Tony Blair has continued his warnings about the Conservatives by claiming they would risk the economy and investment in public services. Tory leader Michael Howard says his party would offer action on the people's priorities and open a new "chapter of hope" for Britain. Charles Kennedy predicted the Lib Dems would take a "massive step forward".” Link

Last ditch appeal for the Black vote

An article about last night’s hustings in Holborn; the debate was a little more heated than the article suggests with one person being ejected for disruption. That said the audience was a good mix with much passion, insight and relentless attempts to hold the panel to account.

One more thing that really impressed me (and again not mentioned in the article) was how impressive the green MEP Jean Lamberts was! She not only had some of the biggest applauses of the night she also came across as being the person with the most integrity. I’ve never actually looked at a politician before and thought I could trust a word they said but Jean had me won over.

Chalk another vote up for the Greens tomorrow (and thats my opinion not official OBV policy btw!).

“Hustings organiser Simon Woolley, director of OBV, said our communities were "at the dawn of a new era of civic engagement." Reminding his audience that Black voters can decide the result of 70 seats, he said: "Never before have the Black electorate been so powerful.

"It's unacceptable that we only have 13 MP's when it should be nearer 60. Whose gonna change it? We're gonna change it when we use our votes and tell them no-one will get our vote until they address our concerns."" Link

Blair: don't risk a Tory government

Perhaps if you don’t want a Tory government you shouldn’t vote for Blair/Neo Labour? Anyway, we’re into the last few hours of the election campaign and things look, well, not that much different really. Labour look set to win with a fairly workable majority, the Tories may even pick a few new seats as might the Lib Dems. The only really change we might see is a Green MP or two and a possible Respect MP.

Of course the interesting times will really start when Brown takes over, the economy takes a dive and Bush orders the UK to invade Iran with him! Pessimism? Maybe. Cynicism? Quite probably!

“The three party leaders will be criss-crossing the country today in a frantic last bid to get their votes out, with Mr Blair touching down in Lancashire, Scotland and County Durham; Mr Howard visiting Surrey, Yorkshire and Norfolk; and Mr Kennedy stopping in London and Yorkshire.

The latest Times/Populus opinion poll puts Labour eight points ahead of the Conservatives, on 41% compared to the Tories' 27%, and with the Liberal Democrats on 23%.” Link