Monday, October 20, 2008

Two Types of Campaigner

One thing I do like about by election campaigning that takes me out of my own territory is that you get to see the real style of other party's campaigners. Within the confines of West Lothian where I am a known face and each of the other parties activists are also known faces everyone is generally nice when you bump into each other.

However, on Saturday it was the tale of two very different groups from the same party in the space of a little over an hour. First off out in the Macedonia area of Glenrothes in the confusion of some rather confusing street numbering amongst the hedges just off the Roxburgh Road we bumped into a rather decent quartet who were friendly enough just to acknowledge us and our presence and the weather.

However, moving down to the Caskieberran area I came across a rather different story. Turning the corner at the foot of Ivanhoe Drive I met five SNP deliverers. I jokingly said, "Come on this ain't fair five against one." As my delivery partners George Lyon and his daughter where in neighbouring streets. After finding out I was a Lib Dem campaigner one of them shouted back at me, "Can I get your autograph, I've never seen a Lib Dem." Before going on about how he'd never met Tavish Scott etc.

Shame really that this obnoxious campaigner obviously doesn't do a lot of campaigning. Must have been his first time anywhere near an election or a count, or a hustings probably. However, I have meet some Nats. Once was greeted by name on the Dunfermline canvass trail by the Education Minister while Douglas Chapman greeted Willie Rennie. I'm also fortunate to have meet through campaigning locally many of Alex Salmond's old school friends and I know what some of them think of him, it's not all good for him.

However, I never would knock another campaigner while out delivering, canvassing, hanging from adjacent lamp posts or wherever. Shame that not everyone is of the same frame of mind, heaven knows what mood they would have been in if it had been raining.


Jeff said...

Sounds like fairly standard banter to me.

If there was a nasty tone to the comment then fair enough, that'd be poor form.

Stephen Glenn said...

There was in the tone and execution of said statements yes Jeff. Having seen the good, the bad and the ugly over 20 odd years I can tell the difference, between banter and an escalation to nasty.

I opened with banter, the escalation, then followed and didn't cease until I was out of earshot.

I did bite my tongue (figuratively)at the time.

Jeff said...

Good job then, best just to walk away.

I saw Richard Baker on Saturday delivering leaflets in North Glenrothes. Didn't get close enough to say hello, though I did note he looked a bit cheesed off and rather lost.

There was instant karma though as I (and my 3 colleagues) got thoroughly, thoroughly lost only minutes later.

Incidentally, getting a "good morning" out of your average Fifer was like blood from a stone in some areas.

Stephen Glenn said...

Aye I just knew I could blog it later. Oops when some people wind up the wrong activist for another side.

Aw, I reckon I may have to try donating to SBTS from a few stones then. ;)

- said...

My first time out campaigning for the Tories for a Scottish council election with a rather more experienced member, I happened to bump into the Labour candidate.

In hindsight, I shouldn't have been surprised, but I was quite taken aback by the general pleasantness of the meeting and the conversation that took place between us lasted quite some time and wasn't in the least bitter or unpleasant. I suppose ultimately there was an unspoken acknowledgement that we're all in it to try and create a better country and to do the same thing for our respective parties. Anyway, I felt I learned something that day - that silly partisanship won't gain anyone anything.

Stephen Glenn said...

By in large dg you are right about those who go out campaigning week in week out. There is that sense of comaraderie, sometimes however as I find from time to time by elections bring out some of the worse sort of armchair campaigner.


Related Posts with Thumbnails