Here’s a very good piece by The Times’ Greg Hurst on the tactics used by Ming’s minions in yesterday’s Bromley by-election. The LibDems ruthlessly portrayed Bob Neill as a career politician and outsider (because of his Docklands home):
"Having settled on their message, the Lib Dems used their particular strength to disseminate it: hundreds of thousands of leaflets were delivered by an army of volunteers who flooded to Bromley and Chislehurst from all quarters of the country. In the final days of the campaign the Lib Dem headquarters on Bromley’s main shopping street was thronging with Lib Dem leafleteers. Residents, and even rival political parties, marvelled at the volume of Lib Dem literature delivered in such a short space of time: skilfully designed tabloid newspapers, glossy brochures, newsletters, even a magazine style compendium including pictures of their candidate Ben Abbotts as a baby. This last publication had a mock Post-it note on the cover as though delivered from a friend or well-wisher."
Yes, the LibDems did play dirty but they were also stronger organisationally and tactically than the Conservatives. Attacking the negativity of the LibDems must not hide the need for a major overhaul of the Tory campaigning effort. But how many times has this been said before? Iain Dale believes that the party needs a dedicated director of campaigning. Does anyone have any recommendations for who that could be?