Archive for août, 2013

Chasing the Wrong Target - by Michael Webster

Mardi, août 20th, 2013

Considerable efforts have been devoted in recent years to obtain the right to vote for those who have been expatriates for more than 15 years, although most of these may be thought to have lost their links with any constituency back home and the ability to choose between the candidates for election there.

A far more important problem is this. There are estimated to be about 5 - 6 million British citizens living abroad, of whom 1.5 million or 30% are not eligible to vote. Let us suppose that half a million are underage, leaving 1 million deprived by the 15-year-ruling.

According to a recent Parliamentary Commission, of the 3.5 million entitled to vote only 20,000, yes 20,000 , are registered to vote. Surely this is the real problem. How to get those who have already the right to do so to exercise that right rather than seek it for those who have been expatriates for countless years.

Michael Webster

Ethnic Minority Vote and 2015 Election

Mercredi, août 14th, 2013

The Conservative Party’s 40:40 campaign for success in the 2015 General Election, is focussed on the 40 marginal seats it needs to gain from Labour (19) and the Lib-Dems (21), as well as the 40 marginal Conservative seats it must hold.
Hopefully this focus on these 80 marginal seats has taken into account a study by the parliamentary cross-party group Operation Black Vote, which suggests that the number of seats where black and Asian votes could be decisive has increased by 70% since the 2010 election.
This research published in the Guardian shows that in 168 marginal seats, including constituencies beyond inner-city areas, the ethnic minority vote is now greater than the majority of the sitting MP.
These ethnic minority communities have traditionally represented an area of strength for the Labour Party which captured 68% of their vote in 2010, compared with 16% for the Conservatives, the latter support perhaps eroded further by the current government’s tough stance on uncontrolled immigration.
Jim Messina, the Conservatives’ recruit from the Obama campaign which so successfully harvested the ethnic minority votes in the US Presidential Elections, should be well placed to provide some good advice on how to improve the appeal of the Conservatives in these communities.

Reference: The Times, Monday August 12, 2013, page 13: Ethnic vote may decide result of next election.