I spotted this little nugget and can't resist the temptation to share it with the world. The Lib Dems comfortably held the North Road ward by-election in Darlington yesterday, taking 51% of the vote.
Labour however seem to have been a bit upset by the quantity of Lib Dem literature. Labour Councillor Nick Wallis, who is also Labour Euro candidate for the North East, on the day before the election, was muttering about how terrible it was that such a tonnage of information was being delivered through people's doors. On his blog he wrote:
The North Road by-election ends tomorrow - any kind of debate between the parties has been drowned out by the usual LibDem Sturm und Drang. Frankly, this number of leaflets from one party brings the whole process into disprepute [sic]. Still, we'll see the result on Thursday night.
Seems that Nick believes that in an election, debate should only be between the parties and he resists the idea that voters should be told what the candidates and parties believe in and want to do for an area.
"We shall see" he said. Well, we did see (and the people saw the Focuses) and Labour lost, taking less than half the votes of the Lib Dems.
Frankly though, the idea that putting out information to voters in an election brings the democratic process into disrepute is mindbogglingly ludicrous.
Perhaps there is an explanation for Nick's thoughts. Maybe he is simply basing his comments on people's responses to Labour leaflets. In my patch, when Labour used to put out leaflets, their vote went down. Now they have given up putting out leaflets, except for the odd one (normally very odd) that appears during an election.
Anyway, Nick's comments can be read here: http://darlingtoncouncillor.blogspot.com/2008/11/north-road-news.html
We are, of course, looking forward to Nick's Euro campaign next year. The non-appearance of any leaflets from the Labour campaign will be most welcome!