Sunday, 30 December 2007
Or should I say local election fever? I live in Newton ward in Sandwell. Newton with its neighbouring ward of Great Barr is usually considered one of the more prosperous parts of Sandwell and a cash cow for council tax. For the past twenty-five years or so we have been represented by Liberal/Lib Dem Councillors. We now face a bye election due to the death of a long serving councillor. In the past labour have virtually forgotten Newton the Tories almost ignore it and publish one almost the same leaflet at election time slagging of Labour and complaining about our new public building. They usually poll approx 700 votes. The minor parties such as the Greens, Independents and those “who can’t be named” can’t be bothered to contest the ward. About six years ago a well respected Lib Dem stood down and his replacement has been disappointing along with the performance of his colleagues. At the same time a friend of mine who is very active in the community started campaigning under the Labour colours. During that time he has reduced the Lib Dem majority year on year until now facing a Lib Dem candidate unknown to our community he has a great chance of winning. All the parties recognise this so I expect a very high profile campaign. In fact it’s already started with a Lib Dem leaflet introducing a new member to the team and Labour putting out a leaflet just before Christmas. A Lib Dem Blogger in Sandwell is trying to undermine my mate and the rest of his little team by claiming Labour are promoting those “who shall not be named” in his leaflet. I think this is just them running scared and the election has not yet started. Newton I think is going to be the in place in local politics over the next few weeks. I will not be voting Labour but I will be voting for their candidate my mate Dave Hosell. More on this as time moves on. Should be a good source of material for a blog such as mine.