Today’s canvassing efforts were heart warming to say the least. We went with a group of 1st year students to the UEA to Chapel Break and found a very warm reception. Name recognition is still very high and, despite doing a mixture of areas, we seem to be polling well ahead of Labour. Issues ranging from dog mess to anti-social behaviour and double-parking today. Also we got the first real direct criticism of the Labour Councillors for the area. People sometimes say, “I’d not vote Labour”, but you don’t know if that means not Tony Blair, not Labour or not the local councillors. Today people directly accused them of being lazy and stay-away in their attitude to Bowthorpe. Quote of the day, from Jay Gardens, was “it doesn’t matter how many pretty pictures of them, smiling and pointing at the road they do, we know they take us for granted.” Interestingly very, very few people around Chapel Break voting either LibDem or Green – everyone polarised between the two major parties.
Nationally the LibDems seem to have taken an interesting right-turn in the first few days of Sir Ming’s leadership. Firstly he backed the privatisation of the Post Office (of which we said he would at the last general election only for local LibDems to go apoplectic … apologies can be e-mailed to me). Now ITV report that they are set to slash the lone parent benefits.
Update on those pesky LibDems
Apparently North Norfolk MP Norman Lamb is set to be Sir Ming's Chief of Staff ... a curious move there really, I might have thought a front-of-house job was best for good media-performer Norman.