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Can we have an explanation for why you've run away from your pledge to stand BPA candidates in every constituency in the UK? Frit.
We haven't. At the 2010 Election, which is when we said, we will. You might even be old enough to vote by then.Honestly, the long summer holidays after the exams are a public nuisance.
But that isn't what you said the other day. You said BPA *endorsed* candidates - which, as you're well aware, is a different thing.But do we take it from your last comment that there will be 645 odd candidates standing in 2010 election under a BPA banner, and identified as BPA candidates on the ballot paper?
Yes, if the Electoral Commission will let us. That's now up to them. They are not used to being stood up to, and they know that they have been warned, so I don't anticipate a problem. But I won't be going into the details of that here.
I don't think you're frit not to be standing in H&H, David. After all, nobody is under any obligation to stand in an election - especially when that election has been called as a publicity stunt, with the deck massively stacked in favour of the person who called it, and especially when the person who called it claims, idiotically, to reserve the right to dictate which single issue the election is about. Stick to your guns! You and Kamm are right, David Davis is wrong.
Thank you, Arnold. But Davis is right about the issues, whatever one might think of his tactics.Now that, for good or ill, there is going to be this by-election, if the other side really believes that its view is so popular, then why doesn't it put somebody up?That person, barely troubled by lefties or darkies in East Yorkshire, would romp home. Wouldn't he? So what's stopping them?
No, because people vote for candidates for a whole host of different reasons. For a long time now, the electorate in H&H has been sympathetic to Tory candidates, on the basis of the broad range of Tory policies, and overwhelmingly hostile to Labour candidates (they came third last time). This has been true even when the country at large has been returning Labour governments with huge majorities. The idea that it would suddenly vote for a Labour candidate now, on the basis of a single issue which is unlikely to be their main political concern, is just absurd.Davis might be right on the issues - there may well be a decisive reason of principle that explains why he was absolutely right to vote for 28 days detention and absolutely right to vote against 42 days detention, although I confess I can't see one. But on the tactics, he's totally wrong, and Labour, in refusing to join in with his little game, is totally right.
It wouldn't be a Labour candidate. It would presumably say "Independent" on the ballot paper.Someone like Oliver Kamm (still never rejoined Labour, voted Tory last time because his local Labour MP was anti-war) or Douglas Murray (voted Labour in the Ealing Southall by-election because of remarks by Baroness Warsi when they were both on Question Time, wrote about in the Spectator, so certainly not a Conservative Party member now if he ever was).Why not? What are they afraid of? That no one in Mailland or Telegraphland really agrees with them about the erosion of liberty?
If the argument that H&H voters don't vote for Labour candidates is correct (and it is), the argument that they don't vote for independent candidates is a thousand times more correct. I wouldn't criticise anyone for refusing to stand in the pointless circus that is the H&H by-election, which is why I'm not criticising you for it.
Davis himself may yet be an Independent.
He won't be.
But he might as well be. Before and after re-election.
No, he'll stand as a Conservative. He hasn't left the party.
It's left him.Once re-elected, he'll be bigger than all the Cameron muppets put together.
You can argue that the party's "left him". But it doesn't alter the fact that he's standing as a Conservative Party candidate, and that therefore the key point under discussion here - that the voters of H&H tend to prefer Conservative Party candidates - still holds.
Against Lib Dem and Labour ones, yes. But they are going to have neither.What they have is the candidate of a supposedly unpopular security and home affairs policy, but no candidate of the supposedly popular alternative, which happens to be government policy.Where is that other candidate? I ask again, what are they afraid of? That no one in Mailland or Telegraphland really agrees with them about the erosion of liberty?I think so.
We already know that H&H is totally unrepresentative of the electorate in general. We know this because they always elect Tory MPs. So the result of the by-election will obviously be completely skewed. And therefore meaningless. As Davis well knows.
The other side knows that Guardian and Independent readers don't agree with them. It knows that Sun and Mirror readers mostly do. But it *says* that Times, Telegraph and Mail readers do, too.Well, let them put that to the test in the thoroughly Times, Telegraph and Mail-reading East Riding. Why not?
Eh? The vast majority of voters don't read a newspaper at all.
They might not buy one, but that's not the same thing.And who do you mean by voters? People on the register, or people who actually turn up? Newspaper readers are far more likley to be in the latter camp.In any case, think of it in terms of the Times demographic, the Sun demographic, the Guardian demographic, or whatever. Do the sort of people who read the Times, the Telegraph or the Mail *really* support things like 42-day detention? This is the chance to ask them.So, where is the means of so asking, the candidate in favour of such measures?