Nancy, Charlotte and Caroline have already made this a great campaign even though Gordon is yet to go to the Palace

As Adam Boulton said on Sky News yesterday, Gordon Brown will today be polishing his shoes ready for a trip to the Palace tomorrow or Wednesday to ask the Queen to dissolve Parliament in order that a General Election may be held.

May 6th is hardly a surprise.  Most pundits have been predicting this for the last year.  It has been a fascinating 12 months as campaigns have been developed, and candidates have come and gone.   Laura Moffatt, the sitting Labour MP in Crawley, announced her retirement at the eleventh hour, leaving the Party in a bit of a pickle, and again has yet to offer any credible explanation as to her actions.

The original Tory candidate in Brighton Pavilion, Dr. David Bull (if I recall his name correctly) resigned with little explanation, having made next to no impression locally.  This allowed the candidature of Charlotte Vere who, by contrast, has taken the constituency by storm, completing a field of three very impressive women candidates, and helping make the campaign in Brighton Pavilion one of the most fascinating in the country.

The Goldsmid by-election last year has given the Greens a platform from which to launch its campaign in neighbouring Brighton Pavilion, and the momentum built up by Caroline Lucas and her team should see her elected as the Green’s first ever MP.  It was this blog called for tactical voting for Alex Phillips in Goldsmid, before anyone else did so.  So too with Brighton Pavilion, it was this blog that some months back called for tactical voting for Caroline Lucas.  It was a tough call (and remains so) since Labour’s Nancy Platts is a first rate candidate and she would almost certainly have won had it not been for the momentum built up by Ms Lucas. 

This blog was wrong in expressing doubts about Caroline Lucas.  She has strengthened her presence and support locally through dedication, charm and enormous competence.  Most constituencies would be fortunate to have either Nancy or Charlotte elected as its MP.  I have few reservations about Nancy other than she is the candidate for the wrong party, at the wrong time and in the wrong constituency.  I hope the Labour Party will recognise the asset they have in her and that she will find herself in parliament in the not too distant future.

While she remains a Tory I could never advocate support for Charlotte, even though I have grown to like her fighting spirit if not always the stands she has taken and her focus on her opponents – she should leave that to lesser individuals such as bloggers.

It is likely that Caroline Lucas will be elected and I predict that she will rapidly become the stand out newcomer to the Commons, and Brighton will have its reputation enhanced by having her as one of its MPs.

I could comment about the campaigns in Brighton Kemptown and in Hove, but they have been so dull and uninspiring that I just won’t bother!

67 days to go, or is it 25? With tactical voting it will be Kemptown Labour, Pavilion Green and Hove …?

Conventional wisdom has it that Gordon Brown will go to the country on May 6th. But Labour friends have hinted that, given the narrowing of the polls (Sunday Times has it down to 2 points although that is probably a rogue poll), Brown might pop in to see the Queen tomorrow in order to have the election on March 25th!

David Cameron’s speech today amounted to little more than raising the bogey of “5 more years of Gordon Brown”, which might prove counter-productive given that Labour now leads the Tories on who people trust to care for the economy. George Osbourne just doesn’t instil confidence.

The “Vote for Change” slogan is rather empty.  Change to what?  Faced with  little of substance (other than not being Brown) when coming to cast their vote, electors will go with the devil it knows (that is other than Brighton Pavilion which increasingly looks like Caroline Lucas of the Greens).

The Greens organisation is really coming together, and the blitz of the constituency this week, well beyond the Muesli Belt, is demonstrating that the Greens, by concentrating on Brighton Pavilion, will almost certainly see the election of the first ever Green MP.

With the closing of the polls, and the concentration of the Greens on Brighton Pavilion, Brighton Kemptown will return Simon Burgess as a Labour MP if other non-Tory supporters vote tactically. As for Hove ….?  My heart goes with Celia Barlow.  What I would welcome is the Greens advocating tactical votes for Labour in Brighton Kemptown and in Hove.  Should they do that, then Labour supporters would be more inclined to vote tactically in Brighton Pavilion.  I just wish that Nancy Platts (I am a big fan) was the Labour candidate in Brighton Kemptown.  With her energy, integrity and enthusiasm, she would win comfortably.