Friday, 15 May 2009

Being on the doorsteps is more important than ever before

It is not easy out on the doorsteps in the middle of expenses-gate but it is important.

There are many who are not interested - many still are - and some just need to talk.

This evening in Hatfield I met a soldier's mother. When I introduced myself she told me she has spent each election reminding others that woman died for the right to vote - but she was so distressed by this week's news she said she would spoil her ballot paper. We talked.

Her son had been sent to Iraq without proper boots, he has fought for our country in Afghanistan. For a family that has given so much to be so disillusioned by their political leaders is truly desperate.

We talked for a long time - I explained the frustrations that had brought me into politics, my background, what we are fighting for in these elections. We talked about what our husbands like to do at the weekend. She even said that she likes her local MP.

With 5 1/2 million people living in the East of England it is impossible to talk to them all - but I felt that this mother more than earned her right to let all this week's anger out on someone who is standing for election.

Perhaps she will now use her vote. I will keep knocking on doors.

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

Vicky , the system is in meltdown and Joe Public is quite rightly furious .
Read todays Telegraph .
Across the three main parties ( and Sinn Fein ) we have a system of abuse and abusers including the Conservative party ( could be said even worse as many of its MPs are wealthy yet still chose to have a mighty nose in the trough )the only way through now is for the three main parties to withdraw from the June elections and let the public vote for those not tainted , pray God that it will be UKIP not BNP.

Anonymous said...

Joe Public is right to be furious but the solution is not to send a bunch of one trick ponies to Brussells, as they have already shown themselves to be a) as corrupt if not more thhan the other parties and b) either incapable or uninterested in standing up for their constituents in the European Parliament. Keep going Vicky, but make sure you publish all your expenses!

Anonymous said...

by spoiling her ballot she IS using her vote

The current crop of politicians seem to believe that abstaining (not voting) is a vote of confidence in the system.

The only way we have to wake them up is to vote for a party we don't believe in

or vote 'none of the above' by spoiling our ballots.

A far more meaning full vote than voting for some crackpot party

Steve Tierney said...

Vicky,

I have also been out campaigning all day (for you, as well as the county seat) and it is bloody horrible out there!

My own feeling, from over a week or back-to-back full-day leafletting and canvassing is this:-

County Elections
Lots of Lots of people aren't going to vote at all. Conservative vote is holding up better than Labour. Lib Dem's are a difficult one to gauge, but I haven't seen much support. So the story is going to be about low turnout. I really haven't seen many switching to fringe parties. But very low turnout can create surprise effects. My fingers are crossed that we can get the vote out safely.

Euro Elections
Again, Lots of Lots of people aren't going to vote at all.
This is the one where everybody I have spoken to who will vote is planning their main protest. I am very concerned about the possible consequences. UKIP would seem to be the main benefactor.

alex said...

What is needed is for her to be given the chance to really use her vote. Parliament should be dissolved and a General election should be called with sitting MPs having to justify their claims to their electorate. I suspect that is the only way we wil restore some faith in the integrity of parliament-but I don't think Gordon has the cojones to do it

Anonymous said...

Read Melanie Phillips article in todays Daily Mail " No wonder our MPs turned to crime.They gave up their real jobs long ago " now theres a really clever woman.