Why’s there no sign of activity on the ground?
Weâ€™ve been debating the AV referendum on PB for more than a year. Well finally itâ€™s here! With less than a month to go, the sun is out and the campaign proper has started. Letâ€™s share reports from the front. Have you made up your mind? Is the march of AV campaigners deafening? And has your passion for AV or FPTP forced you out on the street?
To get the ball rolling, here in Sussex the campaign has got off in the same way as every election campaign, almost total silence. That said, usually by now a few posters would have appeared in fields and hedgerows. But as yet there is nothing to report. The sheep are apparently more excited by Europe than electoral reform.
I am not campaigning, despite door knocking and delivering leaflets for the local election. On my travels, I have not seen a single YES or NO campaigner. No-one has mentioned it on the doorstep. And surprisingly, I have not been asked me to deliver additional AV leaflets.
Personally, Iâ€™m tending towards a weak YES vote, precisely because politics in my area is so ossified. It needs a shake up and whilst AV is unlikely to deliver that entirely, right now it is the only change on offer. As far as I can see the risks are low, the world will not end under AV and it marginally opens the gate to future reform. I am still open to persuasion.
Despite my current personal reference, I expect that apathy will carry the day and NO will win the vote. Without a genuinely popular campaign I just canâ€™t see how YES can win. But we may find that the British electorate, left entirely to its own devices, is inherently less conservative than it once was. Who knows what politics looks like without the party machines?
Anyway thatâ€™s one biased account from the South. Above is a voodoo poll to take the temperature of the PB collective. Have you made up your mind? Are you involved? Tell All!
Jonathan is a Labour activist in a Sussex seat where his party polled 7.5% last May – he writes a weekly PB column