One full day to go in the run up to most interesting general election I can recall. The promises and bribes from every political party will continue throughout the day, liberally spread with exaggerations, distortions and sins of omission from all sides. In the background though, the party apparatchiks and spin docators will be busy preparing their Defcon scenarios of who will ally with whom and putting together their negotiation strategies for Friday morning and the next couple of weeks. Those who are still interested are going to learn a lot about The Cabinet Manual, the guide to how the UK government operates. (Here is a handy link to it if you have no life or find sleeping difficult )
It may be a surprise to all those candidates, agents, party workers and journalists in the”bubble” but there are still many people who are just getting on with their daily lives and not really paying attention. Labour has worked the hardest to create some contact with the disinterested with some remarkable vote catching ploys:
1. Try to the catch the yoof vote by engaging with a serial philandering, attention-seeking, wannabe anarchic smackhead who your own shadow chancellor had described as a “pound shop Ben Elton”. This was seen as a bad move until Russell came out with a rather mixed message of support for Labour ( But not for the beleaguered 45 labour MP’s in Scotland ) but all a bit late as it was now past the time for those zillions of his Twitter followers (who had followed his earlier advice not to vote) to get registered to use their stubby crayons,
Russell meets Ed :
2. Get all biblical and bring real gravity to your election promises by actualising the overused phrase “set in stone”. Commission an eight foot slab of limestone engraved with six commandments. Invite press and stand in front of it, ignore everyone who instantly christens it the “Edstone”
But then forget to make your own vice chair of the election campaign aware of the real meaning of such an action as Lucy Powell car crashed again Asked on BBC 5 live if carving them in stone made them more believable, Ms Powell, Labour candidate for Manchester Central said: “I don’t think anyone is suggesting that the fact that he’s carved them into stone means, you know, means that he will absolutely, you know, not going to break them or anything like that.”
Not that the other parties have failed to make us laugh. In the interests of balance, a pair of Tory candidates for Southend tried to catch peoples eye on their leaflets by making election days more interesting:
Never a party to be outdone in the controversy stakes, UKIP have suspended their Hampshire candidate Robert Blay after he was caught on Video making less than charitable remarks about the opposing Conservative candidate, Ranil Jayawardena:
” If this lad turns up to be our prime minister I will personally put a bullet in him. That’s how strong I feel about it,” he told the Daily Mirror’s undercover reporter.
“I won’t have this fucker as our prime minister. I absolutely loathe him.”
“But I’ve always said in my constituency you could put a monkey out there with a blue rosette on and it would win.”
He accused his rival’s father of having come to Britain from Sri Lanka and “ponced off us … like all the East Europeans are”.
One final thought, if it comes to expedient coalitions with parties who want to break up the UK, then Cameron should consider an immediate one with the SNP and Plaid Cymru. Push through a single policy of instant full devolution for Scotland and Wales and then enjoy an English majority for the Tories of at least 50 seats over both Labour and the Lib Dems. Be careful what you wish for.