Broxtowe Battleground: A Shift in the Axis?

I’ve rather desperately entered the world of employment, and unless I recieve an offer of Chief Political Writer on a major paper by 7am tomorrow, I shall be once again donning a suit fresh from Burton’s discount racks and a pair of shoes that actually stay on my perverted feet and weeping my way down the A52 on the Indigo,so forgive the slightness of this post.

David Watts writes, asking whats my take on the Evening Post’s research that shows Broxtowe is indeed a two-horse race, but between the Soubry and Himself. This comes at the same time I’m skimming the tabloids for nuggets, and see Broxtowe is flagged up on the front page of the Daily Mirror as a place to vote Labour over the Lib Dems to ensure the Tories are kept out while pro-Lab and pro-Lib Beestonians slug it out through the medium of Comments on this site.

Without access to my own polling, I find it difficult to ascertain the veracity of local litmus tests: I have also seen polls which suggest the race is red/blue, and friends who assure me that it is red/yellow….Mike Shore, the BNP PPC, even suggested it was a race between himself and Palmer…only Cobb (UKIP) and Mitchell (Green) have pragmatically admitted their chances are zero.

So my opinion? Drumroll please. Well, the winner is: I don’t know. I don’t have a clue. Thats hard-core political journalism for you.

This election is one of absolute uncertainty, where we could wake up on Friday with Cameron as our Uber-Lord and Soubry exiling me to Cuba; a hung parliament of horse-trading between the LibDems and Labour which will probably see Brown ousted, the much-neglected Cable installed in the Treasury or Brown scraping a tiny majority….its so close in all corners I wont be making my personal prediction until 10pm Thursday.

This is no bad thing, what galvanises an electorate more than any other factor is the margins,  the fact that votes DO count. I’ve never known an election that has captured people’s imagination so much – I hear it on buses, in coffee shops and pubs-and whatever the result, thats a great thing.

Vote with your heart  and head, vote who you truly feel would best  be good for Broxtowe, with the facts available. Just don’t vote Soubry. Thats not partiality, thats just sense.

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15 thoughts on “Broxtowe Battleground: A Shift in the Axis?

  1. Kate Ames says:

    What a time to have to enter the workforce – just when we need you most! Thanks for sacrificing your sleep to give us this latest not-to-be-missed commentary. The next couple of days are going to be agony ..

    Try and snatch some kip now 🙂

    • beestonia says:

      Worry not Kate… first thing I did before even been shown the desk Im going to be shackled to for some time was to book Friday off. This week is like Christmas, my birthday and the hottest day of summer to me…

  2. Kate Ames says:

    Glad to hear about Friday. I can’t imagine going to bed before stupid o’clock on election nights so working the day after would be unbearable.

  3. Zoomy says:

    This is the stage of an election campaign where it’s more important than ever to just ignore everything you hear, from anyone! 🙂

    You can guarantee that every fact and statistic quoted by any political party at this point varies from ‘misleading’ to ‘outright lie’ – especially if it involves that favourite campaign slogan “it’s a two-horse race”.

    And the papers – the Mirror did no specific research in Broxtowe at all, the Evening Post asked such a small sample of people that its figures are pretty unreliable. It’s still a three-horse race, people. Has been all along.

    Congratulations on the job, anyway!

    • Terry Tickles says:

      Zoomy….poor old Dave W is still in the weighing room at this race.

      Soubry riding on the Blue Nag – Ranting Looney.

      Nick Palmer on the Blue gelding – Sensible Positivity

      Can Lord Ashcroft’s millions bribe and bribe the electorate in Broxtowe.

      The Libs-Dems are as usual using the general election to raise their profile for next years borough council elections.

      If this was a three horse race the mighty Clegg boy-wonder he of Westminster School would be here endorsing DW. It ain’t he ain’t.

      Good luck job hunting Beesty Boy

      • Alice says:

        I fail to see how bullying people on their doorstep with threats that a Lib Dem vote will let the Tories in is considered to be POSITIVE POLITICS.

        This election voters have a real opportunity to do something different.You can choose to vote Lib Dem this time so that whichever party has most seats, you’ll have a strong voice in Parliament – very probably holding the balance, just possibly even in power. Now that seems very positive to me.

        Does voting tactically really satisfy you? – or would you rather vote for policies you know will make a real difference and not just same old, same old.

        If you think Lib Dem – VOTE LIB-DEM.

  4. Brox says:

    Good analysis Terry!

    Soubry with a horse-whip….now there’s a scary thought…. 😉

    I understand that a new Tory slogan is being prepared for Broxtowe – it’s “Vote for us, we know where you live”…….

  5. I’m sorry Alice, I disagree. If we had a more proportional voting system, we could happily vote with our hearts, but under the current system we should probably use our heads as well. Putting your X next to David Watts (as well as he has come across) is only going to split the Lab-Con vote, and I would imagine that most Lib Dem sympathisers would rather have Nick Palmer, rather than Anna Soubry, representing us. Due to the vagaries of FPTP, the number of Lib Dem votes received in Broxtowe is unlikely to make much difference on a national scale.

    Sorry, I have made lots of assumptions there but in my (admittedly weak) defence I am sleep-deprived and supposed to be working (and, as it turns out, rubbish at pub quizzes as well, but that is another story).

    • Alice says:

      Any other election, I might just have been sympathetic to Labour seeking the tactical vote. (if I was sleep-deprived and rubbish at pub quizzes 😉 ) But wake up and smell the coffee! Can’t you FEEL things are different this time round?

      • Oh, I absolutely detest the idea of tactical voting, and I am all for change, especially electoral reform. However, as we enter a multi-party system with a voting system that promotes adversarial two-party politics, I am acutely aware of the fact that a Lib Dem vote in this constituency may actually contribute to a Conservative victory in parliament.

        As much as I like Nick Palmer as an MP, I do have sympathy with the view that discouraging the Lib Dem vote is hardly “positive politics”. I am not a Labour voter by the way, in fact I am probably the mythical “floating voter” (even though my personal stance means that there are certain parties that I am unlikely to vote for).

        And I do love the fact that the smell of change is wafting through the air, like the aroma of the freshly-brewed coffee to which you refer – unfortunately I still think that we are lumbered with a system where sometimes you have to go against your instincts at a local level to promote the waft of coffee/change towards Westminster. Urgh.

        This will be my fourth General Election as a voter, and quite possibly the most important – 1997 brought an iconic change of government, this one could see new ideologies and the dissolution of the Lab-Con hegemony. Vive la Revolution!

        P.S. Can you tell that I have had a coffee by now? 😉

      • Terry Tickles says:

        Come Friday I expect you to eat a large portion of Humble Pie,

        Davy “Boy” Watts can serve it you.

        No doubt he will say I thought I had a chance.

        I will thank him for Anna Sourpussy being my next MP (Jesus I hope not…should not have said that being an atheist)

        Hasta la Vista

  6. rutty says:

    I understand the desire to vote Lib Dem in Beeston, but realistically Mr Watts doesn’t have a hope of being elected. I /would/ vote Lib Dem if:

    Nick Palmer wasn’t an honest, approachable MP,
    The Lib Dems would consider expanding Nuclear Power
    Various other Lib Dem policies would align with my approval

    There’s so much in the Lib Dem manifesto that I don’t agree with. I think that FPTP is /preferable/ to proportional representation in that I like being able to vote for my local MP and not just for a party.

    I think that Nick Palmer has done a good job over the years. He’s always replied personally to my emails and was one of the few Labour MPs to vote against the recent Digital Economy Bill – something that I feel very strongly about.

    I approve whole-heartedly with the Lib Dems approach to civil liberties and their enthusiasm for science, and I like Vince Cable but I cannot vote for them locally when we already have such a dedicated MP. I have reservations about Labour but still think that they are our best shot for an economic recovery.

    Plus, if anyone is still thinking about voting Conservative have a read of this:

    http://www.independent.co.uk/opinion/commentators/johann-hari/johann-hari-welcome-to-cameron-land-1962318.html

    • Andrew Turvey says:

      “I think that FPTP is /preferable/ to proportional representation in that I like being able to vote for my local MP and not just for a party.”

      The system supported by the LibDems (and nats. greens etc) is STV rather than party list PR. Under that system you still get to vote for individuals. We’d end up with a larger constituency – maybe Greater Nottingham electing 4 MPs. Each party would put up 4 candidates and we’d get to choose not only which parties share the seats but which individuals from those parties get in.

      The system is used in Ireland, Northern Ireland, Scottish councils, Australia and New Zealand.

      Even the “Alternate Vote” system backed by Labour would be an improvement. We get to keep Broxtowe as a constituency but get to rank all the candidates 1-7 rather than just a single cross. If no-one gets more than 50% of first preferences, you go down to second preferences until someone crosses the line. All this nonesense about tactical voting and MPs getting elected on less than 40% support goes out of the window.

      http://enwp.org/IRV
      http://enwp.org/PR.STV

      • rutty says:

        Thanks for the info Andrew – it’s been a while since I looked at PR. STV sounds much more reasonable

    • Kate Ames says:

      Plus, if anyone is still thinking about voting Conservative have a read of this:

      http://www.independent.co.uk/opinion/commentators/johann-hari/johann-hari-welcome-to-cameron-land-1962318.html

      The stuff of nightmares …..

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