Saturday, May 31, 2008

Can Labour learn from Tory tactics?

If Labour is to have any chance of winning a fourth term then a sound, well thought through political strategy is important but some good old fashioned localised tactics are absolutely essential. In 2005 the Tories won a number of seats (including that of Shrewsbury where I stood as the Labour candidate) by applying some effective local tactics. With just under (probably) two years to the next election Labour needs to get back to being more tactically aware and astute.

So in order to win or retain a marginal seat in 2010 it is - in my humble estimation - important for CLPs and PPCs to do the following:

1. CLP must select early and wherever possible choose a candidate with previous experience.
2. CLP and PPC must adopt a 'long term' approach to campaigning - there is rarely a 'silver' bullet in a local campaign.
3. Adopt a policy of 'extreme 'localism' - does your hospital need to charge for parking? What is policing like in particular wards? Are there car parking issues on a particular street?
4. Focus the campaign of local community issues as opposed to the large macro issues.
5. Highlight the person first and the party second.
7. Draft in as much professional campaign support as possible - from unions, regional offices etc
8. Adopt a policy of positive campaigning - resist the temptation to slag off your opponents.
9. Hard working families like hard working candidates - provide local people with evidence of your endeavours and of the impact that you have had and are having.
10. Target all areas of the constituency and not just traditional heartland areas.

What have I missed? What do you disagree with?


Anonymous said...

I think you're probably on the mark. I would just add you CAN slag off your opponents if they run the local council and therefore carry some responsibility for local issues.If not it's a waste of time. Locally we've promoted the person before the party for several years and it's paid off.It insulates candidates from most of the national fall out when the polls start to go wrong for Labour.
People are not going to want to hear what Labour has done for them in the past in 2010, they'll want to know what we are doing and going to do, they'll want a community champion MP not some party hack.

Anonymous said...

Way off the mark because you think people are stupid and will fall for the bull shit from all political parties, when thing are in fact changing, gone are the days of Labour grass roots voting Labour, or new Labour, they will now vote or not vote for the party which gives them the best chance of a better life.

I've been with Labour a long time 39 years, but I've decided thats enough, I've voted Labour because it was Labour not because they were the best for me, but because it was expected. Thats all gone now.

So be tactical is all good and well so long as the people at the top are doing something worthy right now they are not.

The old saying of time will make people forget it does, I now see the time under Thatcher as being heaven sent to the time I've spent under New Labour. and spin does not work anymore.

Anonymous said...

"I now see the time under Thatcher as being heaven sent to the time I've spent under New Labour. "

Which just proves how crackers you are.As a former Labour Party member who still helps the local party at elections I can say with complete assurance that no period of Thatcher's government was 'good' for our town , our communities or what I would consider Labour voters.Labour has made mistakes in government but they have not engaged in aggressive destruction of entire communities - as Thatcher did. And as I've told people who think 'it's time for a change' -be careful what you wish for.