Here are some of my thoughts about the three candidates in Brighton Pavilion.
On issues of poverty, employment, even the economy, Nancy Platts has the advantage. This is her bread and butter. She is working tirelessly, being seen at events and meeting residents every day. She has the advantage of living on the constituency and enjoys increasing name recognition.
Caroline Lucas, for all we know, might have an equally strong track record as Nancy on , but she is not known for it locally. Other than being the leader of the Greens and an MEP for the south east, she isnt really getting through locally. As leader of the Greens she is excellent, but that is a mixed blessing. She will have increasing name recognition but she is and will be distracted and taken away from Brighton Pavilion.
Will the result be all about green politics? I doubt it. Nancy would be well advised to avoid trying to out-green the Greens and the Tories. No matter how good her green credentials are, and they are impressive, this is an issue where she will come third. She should let Caroline and Charlotte slug it out, hopefully from her perspective splitting the green vote.
Caroline Lucas is yet to counter the allegation of being remote and distant. She isn’t even doing the simple things right. For example, when writing to residents in Brighton Pavilion in her capacity as an MEP, she still uses a London address rather than one in Brighton Pavilion. It isn’t a big thing but it all goes towards creating an impression.
As for Charlotte, it is very early days. The open primary was, stating the obvious, great for her but does not seem to have given the Tories the ‘bounce’ they may have hoped for. She is in Brighton today looking at properties to rent or buy. This will give her an advantage over Caroline Lucas. With just 6 months to the election she won’t have time to draw level with Nancy Platts in this respect.
Class-wise, Charlotte is no Mary Mears or Maria Caulfield. She may struggle, as might Caroline, in Hollingdean and other estates in the constituency. Digby Seaman Scott tried (unsuccessfully) by becoming plain old Digby Scott. Perhaps Charlotte might try something similar. How about becoming known as Chuck?