May the farce be with you
A stench of death is already hanging over the forthcoming election of Police and Crime Commissioners (PCC), and that’s before the votes start rolling in for the 15th November. Theresa May, clearly recognising a turnout disaster looming, has decided that it doesn’t really matter how many people will turn out and vote. When challenged on the likelihood of a low turnout, May responded:
“I never set a turnout threshold for any election, and I’m not going to do it now. What I do know is that the people who are elected as police and crime commissioners would have something that the current police authorities do not have. For the first time ever they will have a democratic mandate for the people for the work that they’re doing.”
But the point is that if turnouts are low, there will be no credibility for the role amongst the electorate.
No votes, no credibility. No democratic mandate.
May’s response is unconvincing, and has all the subtlety of an adolescent blocking out uncomfortable truths by putting her fingers in her ears and shouting ’la la la, I’m not listening!’
This ignoring of reality by a politician at the helm of a flagship project should be terrifying for everyone who is interested in democracy.
Do I really want anything to do with this wreck in waiting? Is this one of those situations where not voting is a credible statement of a lack of faith in a project wanted by no-one outside the Tory backbench bubble? This could be one of those scenarios where mass silence speaks more than a million voices.
It’s no surprise that the candidates for Northumbria PCC are exclusively from party political backgrounds, none of which represent my values. The UKIP and Lib Dem candidates seem to be there just to make the numbers up, given that they’ve been so invisible, with the spotlight focussing mainly on Vera Baird, the Labour candidate, and Tory candidate Philip Butler. Given the massive tribal Labour voting patterns in the North East, Vera Baird looks like a shoe-in.
A couple of posts back I wondered if I was going to vote. On current evidence, I won’t be.