We’ll fight them on the buses…
It’s one of the best parts about a General Election – the battle bus. Every election, party leaders, senior politicians and journalists all clamber aboard an often garishly ugly coach and travel the country.
Labour’s was launched last week in the hope of convincing voters to vote for them on sight of their slogan to a crowd over a couple of hundred in a warehouse in Manchester (Who said elections weren’t glamorous?!)
Meanwhile, Tim Farron got off to a rough start on the Lib Dem bus – a Sky journalist was talking live from the bus, when the camera picked up the Lib Dem party leader slipping down the stairs.
In case you missed it, here's Tim Farron falling over on his campaign bus live on Sky News 😅 pic.twitter.com/AvnVvyNEZh
— Philip Howell (@reasonablyright) May 8, 2017
Presumably, this is a premonition of their electoral hopes…
But what about the Tories?
The Tories had some bus-related relief this week when the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) announced they would not be prosecuting nearly 30 Tory MPs who were investigated over their expenses declaration relating to the buses.
MPs locally did not declare the bus as a campaign cost (which are strict in election periods), making it all look a bit dodgy, but the CPS said;
The expenses were declared nationally…there is insufficient evidence to prove any candidate or agent was dishonest’
One Tory, Karl McCartney, who is now a candidate in Lincoln, called for ‘heads to roll’ and said that senior figures should resign over the saga. He appeared all over the news, positively fuming that he’d been put through this investigation, which he felt was conducted for political gain by the CPS (a non-political independent organisation).
Was it leaked, or was it ‘leaked’?
Labour’s draft manifesto was leaked to the Mirror last week, which sets out Labour’s vision for the future. In it, Labour promise to renationalise the railways, the post office, and energy, scrap tuition fees and hire more police.
The leak, as I see it, is a genius move by Labour, as it now means their ideas can be easily put into the public domain and debated whilst it’s still a draft. Unpopular policy? Easy – just get rid of it.
The other parties will now be locked in meeting rooms, in an effort to race their manifesto out next.
Unpopular policy? Easy – just get rid of it. The other parties will now be locked in meeting rooms, in an effort to race their manifesto out next.
Oh Don Don. He seems to have awoken from his media slumber in spectacular fashion. This week, he fired James Comey, the head of the Federal Investigation Bureau – the FBI to you and me.
Trump, who’s campaign was under investigation by the FBI for alleged links to Russia, apparently announced the relieving of Comey via the press, before telling Comey himself!
Comey found out whilst watching TV, surrounded by his, now former, FBI colleagues.
The cynic in you would suggest that sacking the man investigating you for serious crimes, just because you can, would look a bit suspect. Trump, however, claims that Comey wasn’t doing a good job.
This is the same Trump that praised Comey for opening an investigation to the Clinton email saga just days before the election. But at the end of the day, we’re unlikely to never know what’s going on. Unless he tweets it…
Comey lost the confidence of almost everyone in Washington, Republican and Democrat alike. When things calm down, they will be thanking me!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 10, 2017
Finally this week, let’s hop across the channel briefly to see how our closest continental neighbours got on in their elections.
France were electing their new President last week and it was a straight race between centrist liberal Emmanuel Macron, and right wing anti-immigration Marine le Pen.
In a country that has seen some of the worst western terrorist attacks in recent years, this was an election to watch. Le Pen wanted to close borders, drag France out of the EU and return France to it’s values, to fight against terrorism. Macron, on the other hand, was a far more liberal candidate – open borders, liberal values and a sense of hope.
France roundly rejected the right wing views of Le Pen and voted Macron their new President by 65% – a huge margin. It’s going to be interesting to see how that plays out across the channel to here in the UK.
UKIP are on the decline and the Tories seem to be sprinting towards a huge win next month, but will voters be inspired to be more centrist in their views and hand votes to the Lib Dems?
I’ll leave you this week with a sped up clip of Macron walking to his podium to give his acceptance speech (outside the Louvre none the less!) It took him 4 minutes.
En Marche! Macron's (ridiculously) long walk to victory pic.twitter.com/pLX3YipjiW
— Sky News (@SkyNews) May 7, 2017
I’d have just got an Uber tbh.
Find me on Twitter: @_chrisrobertson