Many thanks to Albion London for putting on a cracking panel last Wednesday in Spitalfields for a discussion on Digital Democracy and the impending UK General Election. More info on the specific event can be found here, including a video with Alan Rusbridger’s insightful views on Us vs. Them and Open vs. Closed.
With the UK election getting into full swing, MPs have been scrambling over themselves to be interviewed by the MumsNet community. Both David ‘Call me Dave’ Cameron and Gordon ‘I’m Just about to Blow a Gasket’ Brown have courted the active and passionate Mums.net community, but having heard from Justine Roberts, founder of MumsNet, I’m really not sure what kind of impact either of them made with that community. They’re doing what politicians have always done; look at stats/results, target a particular demographic of disenfranchised, sitting-on-the-fence voters and trying to woo them.
But is that it? Is the UK election really ‘The MumsNet Election’? The UK election isn’t going to be anything like the US Obama election, that much is clear. So far all we’ve heard are fluffy promises and the same old negative politics and fear; this time though such tactics are being amplified for all the wrong reasons by digital. It goes to prove that in this general election you have to say something meaningful.
“We are going after the tens of thousands of young voters. If we get their vote, we will win by a landslide.”
Ms Omond said that if she wins the election, she will put a third of her salary into local projects selected by her constituents. She also vowed to do one day of community service each week and said she would ensure everyone in the constituency who is eligible to vote is registered by the end of her first period in office.
Ms Jackson, Labour MP for Hampstead and Highgate, last year repaid more than £8,000 in expenses she had wrongly claimed. Glenda Jackson has previously been shown to be one of the MPs who offers least value for money.
In 2007/2008, she claimed £136,793 in allowances despite turning up for only 27 per cent of votes and speaking in just two debates.
Ms Omond said: “The expenses scandal definitely influenced my decision to stand. People in the constituency I’ve spoken to are incredulous that Glenda Jackson would even bother standing in the election. She is the laziest MP in London.”
Ms Omond said the Climate Rush group would be “heavily involved” in her campaign: “We’re going to have people dressed as suffragettes going door-to-door offering to draught-proof houses and sort out insulation.
Should be interesting, if only as a side show…