Anarchy on the South Coast – Is anyone actually running the Tory campaign in Eastleigh?

22nd February, 2013 5:45 pm

Yesterday I noted that the Tory campaign in Eastleigh was in meltdown – but I’m starting to think that might have been an understatement. The whole Tory campaign on the south coast seems almost anarchic – as of no-one is really in charge at all.

Take Michael Fabricant. Yesterday he was tweeting about “suck jobs” rather than focussing on his work as Vice Chairman of the Tory Party with responsibility for election campaign (like…Eastleigh). So it was interesting this morning to see an almost contrite tweet from Fabricant saying that he had decided against going on Any Questions tonight and would be staying in Eastleigh. I asked him if he had decided personally – or whether it was a CCHQ decision (after yesterday, I wouldn’t have blamed them for pulling him from all media appearances – he clearly can’t be trusted). Yet Fabricant claimed that CCHQ had no idea he was meant to be on Any Questions.

To be clear – the Vice Chairman of the Tory Party says he was going to be doing a major media appearance less than a week before a key by-election, and Tory HQ had no idea. And this is the party of government.

And then this afternoon he was at it again – tweeting about “twanking” and sex. Not massively appropriate – but more than that, it doesn’t exactly look like he’s running the Eastleigh campaign. So who is?

Add to that the fact that Maria Hutchings – having been hidden away from a national radio debate yesterday, turned up to a local radio debate today fifteen minutes late, and the PM’s visit to the constituency became mired in a row with the BBC about an empty chair – even the basics are falling by the wayside.

If they win (and they should have done, easily – but it’s looking less likely every day) it will be in large part due to the shambolic campaign that they’re run. Omnishambles isn’t just a way of running a government it seems – it’s a way of running a by-election campaign too…

  • robertcp

    The worrying thing is that the Tories might still win if Labour does well. FPTP is such a wonderful system!

    • NT86

      According to a news report by the BBC, Diane James the UKIP candidate is picking up stream in her campaign. That could prove vital in keeping the Tories out.

      • JoeDM

        And pushing Labour into 4th place !!!

        • robertcp

          The problem with FPTP is that we do not know how much support the parties would have if people could just vote for who they like without worrying about tactical voting etc.

  • Monkey_Bach

    It’s a wig! Eeek.

    • rekrab

      On a whig! ouch!!!!!

    • jaime taurosangastre candelas

      He is odd, I think we probably all agree. It seems to be a defining characteristic of most politicians that they have an element of narcissism, and a politician wearing a wig would not appear to be in the small minority of those not narcissistic.

      Has anyone told him that he looks completely ridiculous, and that any story about him is going to concentrate on the wig?

  • AlanGiles

    For all those who remember “Round The Horne” Fabricant is rapidly turning it to the Conservative Party’s very own “J. Peasemould Gruntfuttock” (‘I am a dirty old man of MANY years standing…….and crouching looking through the keyhole”.
    I suppose he is the author and his account has not been hacked?. These seem extraordinary double entendres for a senior politician to be essaying.

  • AlanGiles

    For all those who remember “Round The Horne” Fabricant is rapidly turning it to the Conservative Party’s very own “J. Peasemould Gruntfuttock” (‘I am a dirty old man of MANY years standing…….and crouching looking through the keyhole”.
    I suppose he is the author and his account has not been hacked?. These seem extraordinary double entendres for a senior politician to be essaying.

    • postageincluded

      Wasn’t he a regular LL poster at one time? Gruntfuttock, I mean, not the dirty old man with the world’s most implausible wig.

  • AlanGiles
  • Quiet_Sceptic

    Well with the bookies and some of the papers predicting Labour will be coming in 4th behind UKIP perhaps we should be worrying about our own campaign.

    • Monkey_Bach

      Not exactly a massive surprise given the constituency.

      Here’s an example of the flip side of the same sort of phenomenon :

      “The Conservatives came fifth in Rotherham, after Labour, UKIP, the far-right BNP and the far-left Respect. The LibDems came an embarrassing eighth, behind a local clergyman running as an independent candidate.”

      http://uk.reuters.com/article/2012/11/30/uk-britain-politics-ukip-idUKBRE8AT0D720121130

  • John Ruddy

    Maybe Grant Shapps thought Michael Green was doing it, and maybe Michael Green thought Grant Shapps was in charge?

  • TomFairfax

    Anybody else notice this mornings news that Lord Ashcroft has supposedly decided to refrain from providing financial support at the next general election for the shower of amateurish, daft, and plainly idle Tories, seemingly bereft of motivation or direction. You can hardly blame him. Sticking his dosh in the fire and burning it would be less of a waste.

  • TomFairfax

    Anybody else notice this mornings news that Lord Ashcroft has supposedly decided to refrain from providing financial support at the next general election for the shower of amateurish, daft, and plainly idle Tories, seemingly bereft of motivation or direction. You can hardly blame him. Sticking his dosh in the fire and burning it would be less of a waste.

Latest

  • Comment Europe Could Matteo Renzi be a model for a Miliband government?

    Could Matteo Renzi be a model for a Miliband government?

    With the general election drawing ever closer, it is important for the Labour leadership to examine the record of those centre-left governments across Europe that have managed, in the face of considerable economic difficulties, to put their social-democratic principles into practice. Doing so would not only provide a Miliband premiership with worthy models to emulate, but would also enable it to chart a progressive course in office, one that will allow Labour to realise a broad range of social justice […]

    Read more →
  • News John Biggs confirmed as Labour candidate for Tower Hamlets Mayoral by-election

    John Biggs confirmed as Labour candidate for Tower Hamlets Mayoral by-election

    After Tower Hamlets Mayor Lutfur Rahman was barred from office and booted out by the courts last week after being found guilty of corruption, it was confirmed that a by-election will take place for the role. The date of that by-election is June 11th, and Labour’s candidate – as expected will be John Biggs (the Labour candidate in the 2014 Mayoral race). Responding to the news, Biggs said: “I am delighted to have been confirmed as Labour’s candidate. Tower Hamlets must now […]

    Read more →
  • News Scotland Gordon Brown warns of second Scottish referendum risk

    Gordon Brown warns of second Scottish referendum risk

    Gordon Brown has been hitting the campaign trail hard in Scotland over the past few days, and he’s in Elderslie today, backing Shadow Foreign Secretary (and former Brown aide) Douglas Alexander in his Paisley and Renfrewshire East seat. Few would have expected that Alexander’s seat would be on the line a few months ago – or that Brown would play a potentially crucial role in this election – but that’s where things stand today. In a speech this morning, Brown was […]

    Read more →
  • Featured News Seats and Selections Latest Ashcroft constituency polling shows seats on a knife edge – and a strong Labour ground game

    Latest Ashcroft constituency polling shows seats on a knife edge – and a strong Labour ground game

    There’s an interesting interview with Tory Peer and pollster Lord Ashcroft this morning. Released ahead of his latest constituency polling, Ashcroft argues that “Far from crumbling, Miliband has shown a good deal of resilience in the face of some rather unseemly attacks”. But whilst that’s an increasingly voiced opinion amongst the commentariat, it’s Ashcroft’s polling this morning that shows more clearly what’s happening in the election campaign. Unfortunately, there are no shocking new revelations. Today’s poll tells us what most […]

    Read more →
  • News David Cameron’s rapidly unfolding football nightmare

    David Cameron’s rapidly unfolding football nightmare

    So earlier today David Cameron mixed up Aston Villa (who he claims to support) with West Ham. Since then, things have gone downhill quickly for the Prime Minister despite the best efforts of the Sun (bless them) to spin that this was a speechwriters error. Unsurprisingly, his bête noire (and Norwich obsessive) Ed Balls took the mickey out of him: Hey David Cameron.. I'm off to see that football team I support this afternoon. Name escapes me.. they play in yellow… Watford? — […]

    Read more →
Share with your friends










Submit