Last minute decisions

WE heard a lot at the General Election of how dithering voters couldn’t make their mind up right to the last, some setting off to the polling stations still even then not knowing for sure who they were going to support. Only once inside the booth, did they feel inspiration running through their veins and into that stubby pencil.

People with clear convictions over their party allegiances don’t really believe the above actually happens. It’s just a polling day story to them. How silly would you have to be to collect your paper at the polling station and then head to the private booth with your head still racing with indecision?

Yet, a senior Lib Dem tells me that during counting for the recent Hampstead and Kilburn parliamentary seat, there was clear evidence that people did prevaricate like confused quiz show contestants in those final seconds. The source tells me that there were around 50 papers which looked like they had a cross marked in the Lib Dem box, that had then been scribbled out. In most of these cases, a new mark was apparently then made for Labour. It’s an interesting story. Just another bit of evidence, the Lib Dems believe, of a genuine panic at the polls among people who they think were bullied into sticking with two party politics.

6 Comments on Last minute decisions

  1. Theo Blackwell // May 25, 2010 at 12:51 am // Reply

    Oh for goodness sake, the Liberals just can’t quite believe that they didnt win Camden – still. As for being bullied ‘two party’ politics, earth to Planet Ed and Jo and your weird lib dem victimhood – your campaign clearly targetted voters with slogans like ‘cant win here’ and ‘474 to win’ (against Labour), and the voters in the end still made up their minds and didn’t vote for you in sufficient numbers.

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    • Ed Fordham // May 25, 2010 at 9:32 am // Reply

      You’re bang on in that I didn’t get enough votes in sufficient numbers. But it is often said that 20-25% make up their mind as they go to vote/in the polling station. And therefore not often you actually see some insight of people changing their mind after they voted… interesting but not game changing… Ed

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  2. David Collins // May 25, 2010 at 1:17 am // Reply

    Sad that the LibCons still can’t come to terms with their result. Of course it would have taken far more than 50 votes for the Lib Dems to have overhauled Glenda, but if 50 Lib Dem voters had instead gone for the Tories then Mr Philp would have won. I’d venture that the number of voters who wanted a change, but bought the 474 myth was much more than 50!

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    • Ed Fordham // May 25, 2010 at 9:33 am // Reply

      Or the number of people who bought the line from the Tories that if you “vote Fordham you get Gordon”?… come on, all parties employed differing tactics on this who can win stuff and the electorate make their own mind up. Ed

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  3. Local Tory // May 25, 2010 at 10:28 am // Reply

    Oh FFS. Get over it. There were probably 50 crossed out Tory votes that went LD, 50 crossed out Labour votes that went Tory, spoiled votes here there and everywhere, an idiot UKIP candidate who really did cost the Tories the seat, we all had supporters who lost their postal vote or went to the wrong polling station etc etc etc.

    Glenda won. Everyone else lost. Was it fair? Meaningless question. Did she deserve it? Meaningless question. She won. End of.

    If the LDs are going to be such cry babies about all this maybe they ought to take up a nicer hobby, like bus spotting?

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    • I must concur with the essence of LocalTory’s post. Quite simply after 3 years of the Lib Dems and Conservatives fighting that seat if you don’t get enough votes come polling day then they simply aren’t yours to have and any conversation over what ifs is redundant.

      I don’t even think that the UKIP votes can be expected to go Tory had there not been a candidate. After so long if you can’t persuade them they’re just not yours.

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