Dead Men Left

Wednesday, June 09, 2004

Balls (crystal)

I had an almost completed and very nearly eloquent piece all lined up on Resepct, the collapse of the two-party system, participation vs. command, the role of the media, etc etc, but it's gone midnight and I have to be up at 6am tomorrow to catch the big green Respect bus. (Maybe some other time.) Wandered back from the eve-of-poll rally in Friends' Meeting House via some more leafletting, all of which made think, first, hurrah for Lindsey German (she really is rather good at this sort of thing), and second, "at what point should a brand spanking new political organisation be making an impact on the opinion polls?", to which the answer is obviously "not until after the election, matey."

The distance between the Socialist Alliance-style vote Respect is apparently polling, and the non-Socialist Alliance response on the ground is so vast as to be embarrassing. I stand to be corrected on this (and if people can, please do), but I don't think the Green's 1989 Euro result was predicted by any major polling organisation. The Greens received 2.2m votes - 15% of the total - apparently out of nowhere, pushing the newly-formed Liberal Democrats into fourth place. I don't expect Respect to perform anywhere near as well; however, I think our results will be some way above what the polls are predicting. There is, of course, a huge amount resting upon this, and the assorted undead of the so-called left would doubtless be first to pounce on a weak Respect result. I've vaguely mentioned before some of the reasons why opinon polls consistently fail to predict minor parties' votes; suffice to say, it will be genuinely disconcerting if we do not pick up seats tomorrow across the different elections. Most likely is Lindsey German onto the GLA; next is George Galloway to Brussels; after that - who knows?

(Just get out there and vote, you buggers.)