Saturday, February 26, 2005

A Day on the Doorstep

A fascinating day's canvassing today. We started at 9.30 with a quick whip round the Farmer's Market at Fakenham. We then spent the morning on the doorstep, periodically getting soaked. Exceptional response to the announcement on Council Tax this week. Every pensioner we met knew about it and liked the idea. I then went to visit a couple in East Barsham who had asked to see me - previous UKIP voters who will now return to us. Then on to see a small businesswoman in Kettlestone. She is starting up a french furniture restoration company. In the afternoon we did a couple of hours on the doorstep in Sheringham. Had quick chat with Peter Baldwin, the chairman of the local LibDems. Nice man. Am just about to beautify myself (might take some time) to go to dinner with some people in Gunthorpe.

It seems like May 5th is now a racing certainty (sorry, Robb - didn't mean to mention racing - I know how it gets you going!) I will be spending tomorrow with a wet towel over my head planning my campaign schedule day by day, hour by hour. I've done quite a bit of work on it already but it's one of those things which I have rather put off finishing. At least all the literature is now decided, if not fully written. The Electoral Commission announced last week what we're allowed to spend on our campaigns. It's around £12,500 for the whole campaign. It's not a lot when you consider you have to print several bits of literature for 81,000 people.


Anonymous said...

Well done, Iain.

Anonymous said...

One last word. Can you not see that your obssession with where Norman Lamb lives, exposes and suggests that you have little else of importance to say? Do you think that a single voter will vote for you because Mr Lamb lives just outside the constituency? If do, you are truly inexperienced and naive. Norman Lamb's support, I guess, has it's genesis in the 12 years he has spent nursing the constituency building up a massive fund of goodwill. You would be churlish, and blind not to recognise that.[and stupid]

Anonymous said...

81,000 people is presumably about 45,000 households?

In which case £12,500 is about 28p per household, enough to pay for half a dozen leaflets per household.

I would have thought that was plenty?

Anonymous said...

Crikey Robb,

You've had more farewells than Frank Sinatra!

Is this it?

Iain Dale said...

Neil, it's certainly better than it was!

Iain Dale said...

Robb, i can't remember the last time I mentioned this. It seems to be you who has the obsesssion. Although I'm told North Norfolk Radio asked him about it on Friday and he got very tetchy. As a result it featured on their news bulletins for the rest of the day...

Anonymous said...

But Iain - you've already had at least £11,000 out of the charming Lord Ashcroft (perhaps because he sees you as a kindred spirit?), which obviously you can't use for the electoral campaign but which must have come in pretty handy to pay for all that campaigning in St Benet's... Funny isn't it how people who don't want to actually pay their taxes in Britain still feel they want a finger in the pie. If Lord Ashcroft wants to be involved in British politics, wouldn't it be a bit more seemly if he deigned to contribute to the economy like any other person? Or is he special?

Anonymous said...


How is it that you have such detailed info about Lord Ashcroft's tax returns and really, is it any of your business? Such nitpicking, tsk tsk.

As I have dual citizenship I am entitled to vote in the States and you can bet that I voted in the Presidential Election. Why shouldn't I? Not only is it my right, it is my obligation even though I will probably never move back. I still have family there that policies have impact on and let's face it, we are so interconnected in this world that policy in one major country like the US or the UK impacts the entire world.

I don't suppose any ex-pats or tax exiles contribute to the Party of you choice, do they?

Westbury-on-Trym Lib Dems said...

Ex-pats are rather different from tax exiles, Lady Finchley.

Everyone, I think, recognises that some people have ties to more than one country and may choose to live in one place but retain citizenship in another. That is absolutely fine. They may even have a higher tax liability in their adopted country - you may be a case in point although I do not presume knowledge of your finances.

Tax exiles - people who move from place to place to dodge tax liability - are rather different in most people's eyes. Even if their activities are technically legal, a lot of people have moral qualms about such things.

They feel particularly annoyed when people like Lord Ashcroft who avoid tax in this country (due to being tax exiles) get seats in the House of Lords due to their donations to political parties. He even gets to vote on British budgetry arrangements!

The lawyer in me stresses, of course, that Lord Ashcroft's tax status may be frowned on by many but is entirely legal to the best of my knowledge.