Before this election was called, I despaired. I wanted it to be over quickly, because I felt that the two party stranglehold of two party politics- meant that no matter who I voted for- the same government would be in power. Doing the same things.
Then Cleggmania happened. People misunderstood Cleggmania. Clegg mania was never about Nick Clegg- it was about the realistic option of a third choice. An alternative. The polls went haywire, and people thought it was because Nick Clegg was likeable or that people had only just discovered there was a party called the Liberal Democrats.
This election gave people hope for change= for some reason people realised that their votes counted. People were now considering Nick Clegg, Independents, and smaller parties in a way that hadn’t happened before. In a more balanced(puke) parliament- a vote for these candidates wasn’t wasted.
We found out people were not apathetic- we found out that Rupert Murdoch wasn’t needed to win an election. Record voter turn outs were expected. It was from here that a more representative parliament would come.
Since Cameron managed not to make a complete dick of himself for the first time, there has been a feeling taht something has fundamentally changed-and a Conservative victory is likely.
Bigotgate didn’t have anywhere near the effect the right wing press would have you believe, and the polls are still split three ways, in an election where the only consistent themes is that polls have meant nothing. And this will continue, if vote f or Liberal Democrats is not seen as a vote to replace labour, or as some kind of kingmaker to the Tories.
Personal attacking, scaremongering between the Liberal Democrats and Labour, doesn’t show people that this is the election for change. It shows them that this is the same two horse race, with a different horse. And not only does it split the vote on the left, it stops people who were hoping for something different- coming out.
The biggest hope of success for each party in this election, comes from showing people that their votes count. Getting them to come out. The record voter turnout that was predicted. The thing that underpinned the LibDem surge is what will bring success to Labour and the Liberal Democrats. Showing that parties can work together, without compromising political integrity- and that voting is too important to be decided by purely tactical considerations, and political pacts.
It just so happens that voter turns outmore likely to benefit the left-but that’s by the by.
May I suggest #voteforanyone hashtag.