Thursday, 7 May 2009

BNP make the European Elections "sexy"

FIRST port of call for this blog's readers this morning should be another blog altogether - Clive Jefferson's excellent website.

Clive has the link to last night's Newsnight programme which featured our lunchtime activity in Carlisle. You can see it here.

The words that interest me are in Jeremy Paxman's lead-in about the European Elections usually being boring and only the BNP's chances of winning seats making it of interest. Hopefully as the four week campaign drags on, focussing more on the BNP will be the only way for the media to 'sex-up' its coverage of the elections, and that could benefit us greatly.

With nominations only closing today, I have already had two invitations for interviews from BBC programmes. Back in 2004, when I was also No.2 to Nick on the North West list, I only had one throughout the whole campaign.

Other items of interest in today's/or late yesterday's media include:

Eric Pickles keeping an eye on the BNP in The Guardian

Nick's visit to Barnlsey is making waves in the Sheffield Star

Church leaders campaign against the BNP in South Yorkshire, again in the Sheffield Star

Harriet Harman on the BNP in the Gulf Times

Voting takes place today in the Rossmere by-election for a seat on Hartlepool Borough Council. This is UKIP's last remaining stronghold in the whole of the North of England and they have bussed in activists from across the country to try to win the seat.

Twelve months ago, the same UKIP candidate was just 115 votes from taking the seat off Labour and UKIP activists are hopeful of going one better this time around.

For us, we again are looking for percentages with 15% the target but in the light of the UKIP campaign probably 10% could me more realistic.

The North East Regional Organiser Ken Booth was in contact on Monday and he told me:

"It was a busy start to the last weekend of Cheryl Dunn's campaign in the Rossmere Ward of Hartlepool.

We had a very good turn-out with about a dozen canvassers, 16 leafleters, enough people to run two stalls and get several banners up in high profile locations.

"We completed three quarters of the ward with the final full-colour election address and canvassed about a third of the ward.

"With further work over the bank holiday weekend right up to polling day on Thursday should see Cheryl get a very credible result in a first-time contested ward where we are up against UKIP who finished 2nd last May.

"There was a good positive response today with people pledging to vote for Cheryl on Thursday, our Mayoral Candidate and our Euro Slate on 4th June."

These are the candidates:
Hartlepool Borough Council
Rossmere Ward
Thursday 7th May 2009
Christopher AKERS-BELCHER (Labour Party Candidate)
Cheryl DUNN (British National Party)
Dave PASCOE (UK Independence Party)
Ray POCKLINGTON (Conservatives)
Pamela TURNEDGE (Liberal Democrat)
May 2008: Lab 488, UKIP 373, LibDem 291, Con 197.

On stall duty, candidate Cheryl Dunn with Peter King and the man himself, Ken Booth.

Locally yesterday, while I was getting soaked in Carlisle city centre, Paul Stafford was leading a team delivering copies of Freedom to postal voters in Workington. Last night he was very satisfied with the first real campaign day's work and today I'm off to join them for more of the same.

And finally apologies for the lack of response to my correspondence, over 300 emails are now waiting for a reply. When I got in late yesterday afternoon, I had to draw up the postal votes list for today's delivery and then detail the maps. When that was done, it was folding 200 newspapers and inserting a Nick Griffin leaflet for today's drop. Once the postal voters are out of the way, things will be less frantic and correspondence will be top of my list.

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