WR President Colin Bex issued a press release today, protesting against arrangements for a meeting to be held in Eastleigh on Tuesday (26th February). The meeting will provide voters with the chance to hear from four of the candidates in the by-election. (We assume these are from the essentially indistinguishable major London parties.) The other ten candidates are not welcome. Colin is one of those ten.
We’re getting used to this now but it doesn’t get any more acceptable with repetition. It’s simply wrong, and it ought to be strictly illegal as an abuse of the electoral process. It is, above all, insulting to the voters, who have yet to vote and so have not prioritised the candidates from whom they wish to hear. How do the organisers of a meeting decide that four of the candidates are better than the others? Because their parties have done well before? What about past performance being no guarantee of future prospects? And doesn’t it become a self-fulfilling prophecy (not to say a self-perpetuating one) that if you only hear from the successful parties then those are the parties that will go on being successful? To break the mould, we must first break the silence.