One of my photos

UAF Meeting

April 28th, 2007 · Posted by Skuds in Politics · No Comments · Politics

The other day I had confirmation of the date for our Crawley/Horsham UAF meeting. It will be in the Friary, Crawley – right next to the bus and railway stations – on May 23rd. I will be trying to do my best to promote it to see if we can get a decent crowd, but not until we have these elections out of the way.

I dare say we could get more than a quorum just from the ‘usual suspects’ (10 or 12 from the Crawley Labour party, half a dozen from Respect, another bunch from the Crawley Campaign Against Racism, and Bob Lanzer from the Conservatives) but I would love to see a load of new faces with new ideas for whom it is not just one more meeting. If you have contacts among the church groups, sixth form, trade unions or wherever – pass the word around.

Anyway, about the elections: the message is still to go out and vote. From knocking on doors on behlf of Labour I have talked to a lot of non-voters. Some have lost faith in the whole political process (“well they are all the same aren’t they?” ) some never had any in the first place, and most are just not engaged at all. But nearly all these steadfast non-voters are not comfortable with the idea of the BNP standing, so all I can say to them is that if you can’t find it in yourself to vote for anyone, at least vote against the BNP.

it will not reduce the number of their votes, but it will reduce their percentage of the vote and make it more closely represent the true level of support they have – which is very small. Look at it this way, if they have 200 supporters in an area of 4000 that is 5%. Not a lot, but their supporters will turn out whatever happens. If the overall turnout is 20% – not unusual here – that means there will be 800 votes and the BNP’s 200 votes then becomes 25% and they will then claim that a quarter of the electorate support them.

That is what happened in Denne ward in Horsham back in December. The BNP scraped together 171 votes from the 4222 electorate (4% of the electorate). A turnout of 32% gave them 12.7% of the votes cast and you can see on their mesageboards that they are claiming 12% support in Horsham now. If Horsham had got the sort of turnout we sometimes get in Crawley they would be claiming over 20% support for their 171 votes.

Where I am standing in Furnace Green it should be easier to persuade the disinterested to vote. They can go out and cast one vote for Labour and another vote for the Tories to cancel it out, but still register two votes against the BNP. But even in the other wards, even if you don’t agree entirely with any party you will find, along with at least 95% of the population, that you will find more in common with any of them than with the BNP so pick the one you disagree with the least and vote for them.

Even most people involved in politics at any level will admit, even if only in private, that most of the time you are voting for, supporting, or promoting, not what you really want but what you don’t want the least. While the BNP are involved in our elections here I’m willing to put aside my normal dislike of single-issue politics and urge everyone to vote on this issue even if they have no interest in any others.

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