Wednesday, February 15, 2023

People don't have to agree with you to vote for you

Important words of wisdom from the Lib Dem Podcast people. 

Indeed, my impression is that you get more respect from voters if you stand up for what you believe.

Important rider: don't lecture people. This seems to me the most irritating tendency of the left, online at least,

1 comment:

Alex Macfie said...

It's not only the left who lecture voters. In the 1990 Eastbourne by-election, Tories were putting out leaflets saying things like "A vote for the Lib Dems is a vote for the IRA" (the by-election was caused by the murder by the IRA of Ian Gow). The Lib Dems spectacularly won the seat in the by-election. We were likely helped by the style of the Tory campaign, which not only drew attention to our position as the challenger, but also seemed to be lecturing the voters on a supposed moral imperative to vote for their candidate. Voters likely knew that (a) all three main parties were anti-IRA, and (b) as a result the IRA didn't give a Castlemaine which of them won the by-election (its target was Ian Gow himself).
This implies that if the Batley & Spen 2016 and Southend West 2022 by-elections (both also caused by terrorist murders) had been normal contested by-elections, then they would have been treated as such by the voters, and fought on whatever political issues were current at the time, with the reason for the by-election being a footnote (if that) in the minds of the voters. The very low turnouts in both suggest that only the most partisan supporters of the one "approved" candidate bothered to vote, and voters didn't appreciate being lectured by the Westminster bubble about it.