Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Postal Voting has started

The postal ballot papers began to arrive in Stockton homes today.  Here in Eaglescliffe there are 2 or 3 papers - one which is common across the country, one for our ward and one for Egglescliffe parish which forms part of the ward.  Those who live in Preston, Aislaby and Newsham won't have a parish ballot paper.
The referendum one is the one with the greatest long term effect - will we have a new system of electing MPs after May 6th?  Who knows.  People seem genuinely to want to know what's involved and the reasons behind the suggested change but there's been very little factual information going out and a great deal of scary campaigning.  It shows the paucity of the No campaign's ideas when they resort to suggesting that the proposed change is just for Nick Clegg's sake.  If that were the case why are so many non-Lib Dems so keen on it?  And why can a number of Labour MPs now say that something that was in their manifesto for the last election is a flawed system?  They were the ones who went into the election with AV as a manifesto pledge, not us.  Who's breaking promises now? 
All these arguments are silly - the important question is whether we have a system that is discredited by years of abuse or whether we have a system which makes it harder to gerrymander boundaries, means that MPs have to work to keep more people satisfied with their work, and is no more expensive to administer than the current one.  Only if you want to keep the present, flawed system should you vote NO.  For any improvement at all vote YES. 
As for the borough council elections - well obviously I hope that Eaglescliffe will return 3 Lib Dem councillors again but if it doesn't I hope that whoever is elected will look after the place in which I live.  It's a great place with wonderful people and long may it stay like that. 
Ballot papers for Egglescliffe parish are long and take some reading - 14 candidates for 13 places.  It's sad when just one person can't be elected.  I'd rather there was a wider choice, but perhaps not quite as wide as in Yarm with over 20 people contesting the seats.  That paper will take some folding to get into the return envelope!
By 6pm on May 6th all the counting should be done, all the local results known and the referendum result sent in for adding to the rest of the region's results.  There'll be some parties that night and some weeping and gnashing of teeth, but the voters will have spoken.  Make sure your voice is heard - this is your council for the next 4 years and the referendum result will stand for a lot longer than that.


Steve said...

Labour said they'd hold a referendum, not which way they'd support.
Labour apparently lost the general election so they can't be kept to their manifesto, unless the LibDems can be kept to their manifestoes since the 1930s?
AV can give a worse result (more unfair), all it will do is unsure the 3rd party (you) gets more seats.
Boundaries don't get gerrymandered as there is an independent review board, so unless you have some evidence maybe don't accuse this review board of criminal activity.
I'm surprised that Eaglescliffe has only 3 LibDems running, it seems virtually every LibDem running in every Stockton seat is from there, with a few from Yarm.
Also most of the abusers of the system were from seats with over 50% of the votes so AV would make no difference. MPs work hard already for their constituents, you mean they'll have to campaign more which may mean doing less work for their constituents.

LibDem Fail

Anonymous said...

Advice needed I want the current coalition government to fail as soon as possible, do I vote yes or no to AV?