Sunday, March 07, 2010

The Change Election was 2005

Voters have a eight-year tolerance for prime ministers. Any longer than that, and they get restive and fretful. We saw that in the run-up to the 2005 election, where large amounts of left-of-centre people were fed-up with Blair and his zeal to get us involved in wars that had nothing to do with us.

Luckily for Labour, Blair announced unprompted in late 2004 that he was standing down in the next parliament. So voters knew they'd be getting a new Prime Minister. And Labour was careful to show Blair and Brown together throughout the 2005 campaign. We were as open as possible with the voters in letting them know who would succeed Blair. So the voters knew they were getting a change - the question was which change they wanted - a change to Brown or a change to Howard. They chose Brown and Labour.

Roll on to 2010, and the Tories are campaigning on Vote for a Change, and have been careful to let us know that there will be Swinging Austerity ahead if they win. In other words, if you vote Tory, you will be voting for A Change for the Worse. Only voters don't want any change at all, let along a change for the worse. What they want is things to go back to how they were in 2007. Given that 2007 was Gord's glad morning, large amounts of people think he's the one who knows how to restore that moment - hence the tightening in the polls.


DevonChap said...

How was 2005 a change election when Labour's vote share declined from 40.7% to 35.3%? Given that 51% of the voters would be dismayed if Gordon Brown remained as PM after the next election there certainly seems to be a desire for change of PM now.

I also like the fact you say Blair unprompted said he would quit in the next election. Unprompted after massive fights with Gordon that is.

I'm sure most voters would like to go back to 2007 when the economy seemed to be going fine and bust had been abolished but we are where we are and Labour are also promising swinging austerity after the election. The choice is to stick with those who got you into the hole, or change to a different set of faces. I think most voters can see there is little really between them. Whoever you vote for you'll get huge cuts, tax rises and dodgy non-dom donations. Plus la change.

Robert said...

I think if you look at the Polls it shows a lack of interest in the whole political arena. I've not even bothered this year to go to a labour party meeting or even to ask if I can help out or bother seeking if they want me to canvass my area.

Basically I do not care anymore, thats sad I think.

Anonymous said...

Just another 8 weeks until we get the chance to vote on bottler Brown who managed to bring our economy to its kness and sink current & future generations in his sea of debt.

Can't wait bring it on.

snowflake5 said...

DevonChap - In 2005, everyone knew that there would be a change in PM, and people debated amongst themselves as to which one, plus some simply wanted to cock it to Blair before he went, which complicated things in that Labour lent votes to the LibDems. If the Tories had been led at the time by the anti-Iraq Ken Clarke, I feel certain they would have won that election - like I said, it was a change election, it's just the Tories didn't realise it and didn't capitalise on it.

Re Blair announcing in Sept 2004unprompted that he would stand down in the next parliament - it was unprompted, believe it or not, it took people by surprise. He was feeling unwell (he had to go to hospital for heart issues) and he had said from the beginning that he didn't want to a Thatcher. If he hesitated, it was due to his wife and others putting doubts in his head. His objective mind knew that his limit had come up.

Robert - I'm sorry you feel that way. Down my way, Labour activists are rather energised!