Saturday, 23 April 2011

Return of the Thurrock local election running commentary

Well, it’s been a week since the Labour candidate knocked on my door and there has still been no sign of the other candidates.  Is it any wonder that the Grays Riverside Ward is a safe Labour stronghold?  Don’t the other candidates realise that there is very little time left to convince me, and others, to vote for them?  One has to question whether the other candidates really want to represent their neighbours on the council or if they feel that each party has to put someone forward but, as they feel they don’t have a chance of winning the seat, don’t bother to knock on doors.

It seems to me that, with the lack of motivation from the other candidates, there is really no mystery behind the low voter turnout at local elections.  I mean, if the candidates can’t be bothered, why should we?

I have said, in my Your Thurrock blog, that I will vote for the person who convinces me to vote for them but it seems to me that the Labour candidate will get my vote by default and that’s just not right.  It’s also not right that the Labour candidate should apparently win the seat on the council without a fight.  Let’s face it – it’s undemocratic.

I can’t do anything about it this year and, as such, I will not be voting in the election unless another candidate visits me with sufficient time for me to properly consider which one deserves my vote.  It is a great pity as my vote could have decided which political party gains control of the council.

With such lacklustre competition in the Grays Riverside election, if I had the money to run a campaign, I would throw my hat into the ring as an independent candidate when the next seat comes up for grabs just so that the democratic process is properly adhered to.  I doubt I’d win the seat but no one should gain a seat on the council without a proper fight, which is the situation in which we apparently find ourselves now.

How many other floating voters are out there just waiting for someone to knock on their door to give them a choice in who represents them on the council?  I can’t be the only one, can I?  Or has the idea of democracy died here in Thurrock?  There are twelve days left including the day of the election.  Will anyone bother to vie for my vote in that time or will my voting card be left unused again this year?  Time is running out!

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