I have been surprised at a few local bloggers saying that bloggers have to go into "purdah" and not be political during the coming election campaigns. Untrue. The cost of producing any party political matters has to be covered, and accounted for in an election, but I am not a candidate for any of the coming elections so I am unaffected. Also, as it says at the top of the blog this is my personal site, it is not a Labour Party blog so you will find views here that vary with my Thanet Council Labour colleagues and the Labour Party nationally. My views, nobody else's. If others want to speak through this site I clearly indicate that when I post, or indicate it is a guest blog.
If people say they have to not mention the elections, that may mean they intend to be an election candidate, or that they do not understand election law. The cost of this blog is the miniscule amount of electricity I am using as I type, nothing else. I am helped with research by friends but they do not pay me, and I don't pay them. One of the great things about blogging is that a number of people comment or email asking why don't you cover this subject? A big thank you to the many people who have given me ideas for stories since I started. In the end though it is my responsibility regarding what is published.
I will be blogging less, because elections are always busy periods. I think I am more likely to make a difference and contact voters on the telephone, by leafletting or by knocking on doors, rather than by blogging.
The Isle of Thanet Gazette removed Cllr. Sandy Ezekiel's column quite properly because his column would equate to a paid advertisement for the Kent County/Ramsgate Parish elections. However, replacing it with Laura Sandys seemed unimaginative. I would have preferred to see a view from a Liberal Democrat, Green or an Independent. Many people say the Gazette is biased in it's reporting. I have not experienced that for my letters and press releases, but decisions like this are likely to give cause for concern. Cllr. Ezekiel is Leader of Thanet Council, Laura Sandys has no executive power. Perhaps we will see a series from all the aspirant Parliamentary candidates for the two Thanet seats.
The only leaflet I have had so far is from the BNP. That's why I have put the flag up on the right. I have been campaigning to take the Union Jack back from the National Front/BNP all my adult life and it sickens me when they use it.
The Queen has a German background and is married to a Greek. When the BNP complain about people coming in from elsewhere in Europe where will they start? By removing Prince Philip and his children?
How many Premiership footballers do they want to remove?
I hope as many people as possible vote in all the elections and that we do not see the BNP winning representation anywhere.