Monday, May 07, 2007

Goodbye...for now?

It has literally taken three days to recover from Thursday night and Friday morning !

After five weeks of solid campaigning by a great team, we didn't make it, although we did increase our vote by over 1800.

Indeed, our target of 6500 to win was just missed, and we certainly did not expect either the Lib-Dem and the Labour vote to collapse in the way it did.

Congratulations to Gareth Jones for a very good campaign and, for a first-time politician, I have certainly learnt a lot of lessons which will be digested if I decide to ride this rollercoaster again.

Back to the worlds of academia and business for now - future comments will be back on the professor who shoots from the hip blog

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

End of the road?

Well, that's it, apart from our GOTV (Get out the vote campaign) which will be ongoing until late tonight.

I really didn't know what I would be getting myself into when I agreed to be put forward for nomination last February. It is has been a steep learning curve for someone who was a political virgin but a highly enjoyable experience.

Yes, I would have done some things differently but I believe we have done everything we can in the short time we have had to get the Conservative vote out in Aberconwy.

Our campaign has been based on talking to people on the doorstep, many of whom had not spoken to a politician in years. When I finished last night, I realised we had spent 300 hours canvassing nearly 15,000 homes across Aberconwy (and I have nearly worn out a pair of brand new shoes!). We had even delivered 10,000 leaflets by foot in the last 48 hours!

Therefore, if we don't manage to win, it won't be through lack of effort (and I am absolutely knackered!)

Best moments - no doubt it has been given the opportunity to talk to the thousands of potential voters across the constituency, despite having DC visit Llandudno on Tuesday being a close second.

I have also largely enjoyed the increase in blogging during this election, especially when it has involved intelligent discussion on sites such as Ordovicius and BlamerBell. However, the blogosphere has revealed the worst side of an increasing number of political activists who believe they can say what they like under the cover of anonymity. Interesting that they have forgotten that a 90 year old pensioner in Penrhyn Bay will be as influential as they will be on the most important day of the election - May 3rd.

Perhaps, the biggest surprise of this election has been the absence of any other parties when we have been out, with the exception of seeing Denise having lunch in a cafe in Trefriw when Brynle and I were out canvassing!
Apart from that, I haven't seen the others out doing house to house canvassing but that could be due to the size of the constituency, although many people were complaining that no-one had called.

And my prediction... all I can say is that we know exactly how much we need to win this seat and will be working this out as we go through the day.

It is now up to the thousands of voters who have said they will support us (as well as those who are making up their minds at the last minute) to turn out and if they do, it will be an interesting morning tomorrow...