One of my photos

Mayoral election

April 23rd, 2008 · Posted by Skuds in Politics · 6 Comments · Politics

I half-watched the London election programme on ITV tonight; the one with Boris Johnson, Ken Livingstone and Brian Paddick on.   I’m not sure whether the audience had been packed with partisan supporters of all three candidates or that there is just a lot of genuine public interest in the election, or a bit of both, but it was good to see some lively, if predictable, debate.

There are arguments for and against having elected mayors, but it does seem to generate more involvement and interest in elections.  In the case of London I find it hard to even try to put myself in the position of an impartial observer – I would have voted for Ken back when he stood against Labour as an independent – but I have tried to imagine that I have no party loyalty or affiliation and can’t imagine I would ever be tempted to vote for somebody who always gives the appearance of trying to show off with language.   I always get the impression that Boris Johnson doesn’t care so much about what he is saying as how he is saying it and whether he can pluck an unusual or flowery way to express himself, and all with the unspoken implication of ‘look how clever I am’.   But then that’s my normal opinion of the Tories’ form-over-content style.

But talking about style of delivery, what about that Brian Paddick?  I have been to many police authority meetings and other events where senior police officers have spoken.  They all sound the same and they all sound like him.  Is there a special module on the courses at Hendon where they teach them all that style of  delivery?  He said a couple of good things but I don’t think he was at all convincing with his attempts to score points by accusing everyone else of point-scoring.

All of purely academic interest for those of us outside London of course.  The only thing certain about it is that the turnout is likely to be at least three times higher than in the election where I will be voting.  Talking of which, I received my papers today.  I haven’t opened them yet, but I’ll be voting for Ian Irvine tomorrow.

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6 Comments so far ↓

  • Danivon

    >He said a couple of good things but I don’t think he was at all convincing with his attempts to score points by accusing everyone else of point-scoring.

    From a Lib Dem? Say it ain\’t so? That\’s totally out of character…

    Unless, of course it\’s the standard campaigning line that they\’ve used for decades…

  • Gordon Seekings

    Pot, Kettle and Black comes to mind Owen…..

    …..and I can show you election leaflets from all of Crawley’s parties over the years that are guilty of this to a greater or lesser extent. If you really think your party don’t do this then you are in cloud cuckoo land. Didn’t you ever look at your local party website before it’s latest makeover? Some of the articles on that were only point scoring!

    So far as was the audiance partisan then that is a most definate yes. Invitations went out to the three main candidate agents with the intention that the audiance would be partisan. It makes for “good” television.

  • Danivon

    My point, amply proven by your post Gordon, was not that the other parties don’t try to score points off each other, but that the Lib Dems will always use it to try and score points…

    It’s a political cliché.

  • Gordon Seekings

    All parties do it all the time – look at the Crawley Labour website now. References to Conservatives “not listening” and “unlike XXXX we will BBBBB” etc. and yes, if you go the Crawley Lib Dems website there is similar.

    It is actually almost impossible not to do it, as the whole basis of politics is to put forward your own party message and the easiest way to do that is to contrast it with your opponents.

  • Richard

    Another reason why local politics should never be party-political.

    I understand in days gone by there was a very strong “independent” movement in the town.

    Our loss now.

  • skud's sister

    Saw an election poster last weekend (huge great whole wall jobby) that told me that Nu-Labour and Nu-Tories were just warmongers. And apparently the Liberals condoned sodomy. Since this was Manningham I doubt it was a BNP poster but we were driving by so I didn’t catch the candidate’s affiliation.