I am in a state of shock. Allie Cannell left a comment on my blog which I reproduce in full: “I agree with BPB”. I’m not used to such support! And I will return the compliment: I agree with Allie Cannell” when he says that the ‘Caroline Effect’ breaks the idea that voting Green is a wasted vote. HP on the other hand is totally wrong when he/she says that Caroline Lucas has had no effect since “she shows up at parliament every day and effectively p*sses in the wind as she sits in a group of one, just 325 seats short of being able to do anything”. It could be said that Labour MP’s are having the same effect as one Green MP, showing up at parliament every day and effectively p*sses in the wind as they sit in a group of 258, about 70 seats short of being able to do anything.
Dr Faust asks whether Labour and the Greens should actively work together with a view to sharing power? I agree with HP’s comment about the desirability of this locally: “The Tory core is going to hold up okay but there are enough seats to be taken off them to get a more progressive group into power. If the Greens and Labour cannot work together to achieve this then all voters of a leftish pursuasion will have been sold short by both parties”. I know it is wishful thinking, but it is worth thinking about.
The Caroline Effect will be a significant factor in May. Voters will be less likely to fall for the Labour line of “Vote Labour or let the Tories in”. That is a discredited line and those Labour candidates who allow it to be used deserve to be beaten. The Caroline Effect continues to motivate and enthuse Green activists. And supporters of other parties, Labour and Tories alike, are not immune either from the Caroline Effect. But most of all, Lib Dem supporters are most likely to be swayed by the Caroline effect as they desert in droves.
Christopher Hawtree, the Champion of Rottingdean, sums up my feelings about May’s local elections in Brighton and Hove, that this is “very interesting times” with “many moves on the chess board”.