What are Labour Candidates thinking?

Well, this question is tougher for me to answer, as it requires more personal mental gymnastics than the question about their Conservative counterparts, but the main options at the minute appear to be:-

1) “Yey, I’ve made it on to the longlist – now I’ve got an interview” – the likes of Jane Kennedy, who has an interview this weekend, and others who have let TOTC know.

2) “Oh no, the selectors don’t want me and the party members won’t have the option of choosing me.” such as has happened with Colin Inglis. Good enough to be mayor. Good enough in the past to chair the Police Authority. Not longlisted for the Police and Crime Commissioner elections.

3) “Why do I not yet know whether I’m on the long-list? Why do I have to wait to find out, and if there’s a rational explanation why has no-one given it to me already – it would only take an email!”

Interviews follow for the shortlist, and my understanding is it goes to individual members to choose candidates. Not sure about union members’ role, and no one answered when I asked about the voting system.

Besides this, Labour members are currently probably thinking about how to impress/secure the votes of other Labour members. Expect the debate to be increasingly shrill, anti-cuts and anti-“privatisation” until this is all done. They will possibly become more conciliatory and less obviously partisan as the real election approaches.

Meanwhile, as the Conservative selection processes are slightly out of sync, expect them to stay in the shadows for a while, before emerging tougher-on-criminals-than-the-government-is in those areas that involve the public, or even just party members in selections.

I’m not suggesting insincerity in any of this, but it does make sense to emphasise different things at different times to best match the interests of your audience.

Michael Crick says Labour have told him they have about 150 applications, which gives about 4 per area. That doesn’t give much length to a long-list so it must be hard to justify taking someone off it. They also say they have at least one candidate in each area. This emphasises the fact that there are plenty we don’t know about, but also underlines the fact that the party may have next to no choice in some areas, and may yet choose not to field a candidate rather than field a poor one – or is it a case of Re-Open Nominations?

Apart from this, in an election largely without Liberals, with the possibility of votes transferring to unite the views of the left, with a high entry cost for Independents, and with many having trod the Road to Damascus on police commissioners without anyone having really picked them up on it, a lot of Labour folk are actually thinking “Bring it on!”

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