Wednesday, July 05, 2017

The Conservatives were short of workers in the general election

As an acknowledged expert on politics in Bath, I was interested in the comments of the city's defeated Conservative MP Ben Howlett:
When the election was called, Howlett warned the chief whip Gavin Williamson that if the party were to win a bigger majority, it would need “the infrastructure in order to run the campaign on the ground in our key marginal constituencies . . . we don’t have the infrastructure. Labour’s polls were low, but they had the infrastructure, Momentum, going out there, knocking on doors constantly.” 
Indeed, there are stories about how Downing Street staffers had to do a desperate ring-around to try and recruit enough candidates, let alone activists, after Theresa May’s announcement in April. 
Howlett believes the party has been “neglecting” growing its membership. “I hope they’re going to wake up and smell the coffee . . . maybe an organisation outside of the Conservative Party might be a way of actually broadening out the populist appeal.”
They come in a New Statesman article by Anoosh Chakelian, which looks at Conservative members' calls for an equivalent force to Momentum.

She says that call is made up of three wishes:
The first is for a youth strategy that goes beyond “young people don’t vote”, as one young activist derisively describes it. 
The second is to compete with the manpower that Labour and its “standing army” of campaigners in Momentum has at its disposal. 
The third is a social media strategy that will make its messages go viral; videos like Momentum’s Tory broadcast spoof “Daddy, Why Do You Hate Me?” which was viewed more than 7.6 million times and reached 30 per cent of UK Facebook users.


Terence said...

Significant that her "three wishes" make no reference to the most important requirement of all - policies that take seriously the needs and aspirations of young people.

Unknown said...

She is not really interested in the young. Only what to do to stay in power.To win elections all the time.

Anonymous said...

Do they need workers when they have money? One friend of mine received 9 direct mails through the post from the Conservatives during the general election. I wonder if all those will appear on local election expenses?