Thursday, 6 May 2010

Now, we wait.

Polls are closed. It's all over bar the counting, and then the shouting, and of course the postal vote fraud investigations. MPs are now out of season so they no longer have to worry about being spat on in the street, attacked by dogs or worse - by their own party, or dropping out of the sky.

We've always despised politicians in this country but we used to vote them out, not set the dogs on them. Then again, politicians used to at least give the appearance of being honourable. Since they no longer feel the need to treat the electorate with anything other than blatant contempt it can hardly surprise them that the electorate no longer feel the need to restrain their anger. If nothing changes, then by the next election, they can expect to be shot at. Maybe they were expecting it this time. I haven't seen a single canvasser anywhere.

I left it late to vote, as always, and was surprised to find the polling station teeming with voters. I have no idea how the turnout was as yet but I have never seen it like that before. It's the first time I've ever had to wait to hand over my polling card. Perhaps it's because it was raining. All those voters who used to spend polling day in the pub instead of voting are now finding that it's not much fun smoking in the rain. Might as well vote. Unfortunately the only anti-smoking-ban party on offer was the BNP and even if every smoker here voted for them, it wouldn't be enough. I didn't vote for them either. I think they will probably beat the Greens and I'd dearly love to see both of them beat Labour but they won't damage the leader votes by enough to matter.

The Green insistence on global warming will kill their vote here. It's still too cold to think about putting any bedding plants or vegetables out. If it had been a sunny, warm day, the Greens might have picked up a few gullible voters, but not when they're having to take their gloves off to vote in May.

I didn't vote Tory either. It would have been a protest vote but I decided it wouldn't be much of a protest vote. I had nobody to vote for in the end, so I voted against.

The Lib Dems are likely to win the seat. The SNP might take it, but if they do, it won't be by much. I like small majorities. It keeps them on their toes if they know that a few hundred voters could boot them out at the next election. When they get a majority in the thousands, they get complacent. Such a majority can be lost but they have to be totally useless to lose it, and they know it. A small majority, and they have to work to keep it.

So, since I had no hope of overturning the smoking ban this time, I considered a tactical vote that would give the best chance of a winner with a small majority. Lib Dems were the most likely to win, SNP the most likely second. Therefore I voted SNP.

If the Lib Dem wins, I have reduced his majority by one and brought the second place candidate one digit closer to his heels. If the SNP win, they'll only do it by a narrow margin anyway. An SNP MP in Westminster isn't going to have any effect at all unless they are voting on issues that are close enough for a couple of votes to matter. He'll probably hardly even attend. A Lib Dem MP would bring those experimental immigrant ghettos a step closer to Scotland and increase Clegg's bargaining power in any coalition. Both are things worth voting against and the SNP seemed like my best option for doing that. It all depends, of course, on what everyone else voted for.

Then again, if turnout was as high all day as when I voted, absolutely anything could happen. There could be a big surprise in the morning.

Exit polls taken early on are suggesting a hung parliament with perhaps 29 seats taken by 'others', the term applied to anyone who isn't a LibLabCon member. There is possible scope here for forming 'The Other Party' to attract all those who would very much like to vote 'Other' but don't have one on the form.

Might as well dig out a DVD for the rest of the evening. Nothing is going to happen for some hours yet while the electoral gnomes count all those ballot papers. The easy job would be counting the postal votes - each envelope contains ten to twenty forms, all for the same party and all in the same name. All you'd need to do is keep an eye out for the odd one or two that don't say 'Labour' and put all the rest in the pile.

Interesting results will be in Sutton and Cheam, Devizes, Wirral West, Meriden, Cambridge, and Hornsey & Wood Green. I don't expect any of them to win, not this time around, but it will be very interesting to see just how far they get. Remember, Labour were once a minority party, a 'wasted vote'. Times change. I hope they all get enough votes to encourage them to try again. Next time, they will not be completely unknown to those voters.

In case there is a hung parliament, and in case there is to be another election this year, I'd better start thinking about some campaign literature. No, I won't win either, but I can be a right little thorn in the side when it suits me.

Oh, but that decision can wait until tomorrow. I don't want to watch all the speculation. I'll ignore it until the real results come in.


subrosa said...

You voted SNP? I'll convert you to independence yet. ;)

John Pickworth said...

Well I left it later than you LI...

I decided to abstain.

You said in your other post "I can't not-vote. If I don't vote, how can I complain about the ones I didn't vote for?"

While I'm pleased you did vote and wouldn't ever knock you or those that did their democratic duty today; I also think you're wrong.

The Tories are on a certainty to take my constituency. That's okay, I can live with that. But with the 'others' so far behind there's little point voting tactically to shake up the runners-up either.

I'd never vote Labour, ever! Even though I'd like Brown to be tied to the PM's chair to face the full maelstrom to come. And there's also the possibility of him refusing to go anyway. Whatever happens, it would suit me for him to be left carrying the can.

The Tories then? Well like I said my vote wouldn't make any difference in this seat, they'll win it anyway. And.... and, I'm still not fully loving the Cameron project.

I decided today to wait it out.

The country is going to the dogs and while it will be painful for all, its going to be absolutely bloody for those in politics (smile). Some day soon, once the dust settles, hopefully a party with policies I can support will emerge. Then I'll vote.

Meanwhile my non-vote, my refusal to participate in choosing from a piss poor selection of wet, illiberal, authoritarian nannies allows me complete freedom to snipe from the moral high-ground.

The battle has only just begun.

John Pickworth said...

As predicted, the Tories win my constituency... but joy of joy, Labour were pushed into a pretty unconvincing third place after losing 9.5% of their vote :-)

Oh and LI, some news for you too from this neck of the woods:

Gillian Merron

Justice ;-)

Young Mr. Brown said...

"You voted SNP? I'll convert you to independence yet. ;)"

Even I considered voting SNP. I didn't do it in the end, but I considered it. That's how bad things were.

Talking to others, I know that there are plenty of staunch unionists who will be voting SNP this time. Not that it seems to be translating into seats . . .

Dick Puddlecote said...

I like your reasoning for casting your vote. Wouldn't the UK be a more sane place if everyone put as much thought into the matter.

Anonymous said...

Having been suitably depressed to see that UKIP – despite the not-inconsiderable weight of my own vote in their favour – failed to win a single seat, and also that the BNP – whose policies I’m not keen on but who would have given the big parties the real jitters, which would have been at least worth watching – failed similarly, I was nevertheless moderately cheered to see that in terms of pure numbers voting, UKIP can now be clearly seen as the “fourth” party in the UK in terms of “the popular vote,” as they say in the US, gaining almost a million votes and easily outstripping the BNP with just over half a million, and the Greens, with a relatively paltry quarter-million. Irritatingly, that feeble quarter-million did gain the Greens a seat. Time for electoral reform, methinks!

opinions powered by