I may not know much about semi-naked fetish art-work, but I know what I like in a local councillor

‘Lib Dem candidate posts semi-naked fetish photos online’ shouts the local newspaper headline. I suspect it will be one of the more clicked-through articles.

There’s a kind of doomed inevitability to this story, which we’ve seen over the years with candidates from all parties… New person stands for council, with all the right qualifications — community-spirited, motivated, wanting to succeed — except one: they’re not safe.

They have an ‘alternative’ background. You may not find them propping up a saloon bar, or biding their time quietly waiting to become mayor, or ‘turning native’ the moment they’re elected… or any of the other negative stereotypes people often associate with councillors. But they will bring passion, they will bring a fresh perspective, they will make for a more diverse, representative council.

If they get the opportunity.

Because at some point in the campaign their background will become public. The local paper will revel in its excuse to publish ‘racy’ photos. Slowly but surely the chance of alternative candidates being elected reduces, either because voters are put off, or because others who were thinking of standing decide it’s not worth the hassle — to they themselves, or to their family and friends. And so the political circle narrows, constricted to a pin-point.

So let me end simply with this: good luck to Holly-Ann Battye, Lib Dem hopeful for South Northants Council.

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15 Comments

  • conservative 22nd Apr '11 - 5:58pm

    but she is a lib dem… which might be considered a good reason not to vote for her…

  • Andrew Suffield 22nd Apr '11 - 7:57pm

    The article is junk anyway. Here’s her collection: http://hollythewolly.deviantart.com/gallery/.

    It’s not racy, semi-naked, or fetish. Unless you have a monster movie fetish.

    Gothy and kinda weird, sure. But that’s about all.

  • Good luck to her, it would probably have got my sons vote (he is into the whole vampire / gothic art thing) and certainly wouldn’t have affected mine.

  • Jedibeeftrix – given the almost unanimous condemnation on this site of the Liberal Democrat councillor who tried that in Derby last week with regard to the Labour candidate with an old drugs conviction I think your comment is rather unjustified.

  • Kirsten de Keyser 25th Apr '11 - 5:23pm

    Leaving our personal moral compass to one side,
    we live in a democrary.
    In a democracy, candidates must appeal to the electorate.
    Does Holly-Ann Battye appeal to the electorate?

    If the vetting panel answers YES to this question, select her and stand by her.
    If the vetting panel answers NO to this question, they shouldn’t have selected her in the first place.

    It’s not complicated.

  • In reply to Kirsten – I suppose we’ll find out quite soon if she has appeal to the electorate.
    If she wins great – if not then bad choice.
    I have a feeling that this will not do her any good at all.

  • As someone very close to the candidate it is interesting reading your assumptions on here. The blog was very fair but some of you commentators are really throwing bricks from glass houses.

    Holly has not quit as a candidate, just one of the many mistakes in the news reports.

    The Tories are behind the ‘leak’ to the press.

    And Holly is standing to stop this Tory from just walking in- the real story here is that this rotten borough had 13 Tories selected by their party who are already Councillors because they were unopposed, out of 40 in total. If Holly, her sister Tamsin and her mum Ann hadn’t agreed to stand that number would be 16.

    This was a ward that was unopposed four years ago. Should those residents really go 12 years or more without an election?

  • Fanus very public spirited – why don’t you stand a Lib Dem in every ward – the only reason Tories are unopposed is because we let them get away with it.

    I trust you have evidence of Tory bad behaviour and can name the guilty – but cant see how you can call it a leak when all is publicly available. Is is possible that a quick google search would show it up that a journalist could do as easily as anyone else. If you are saying the tories said have a look at this – then that is not a leak. We’ve done the same no spin, no gloss, just facts – have a look – make your mind up, sit back see what develops. In this case things developed big style.

  • Thanks for clearling that up – glad she is carrying on
    Your reply reads like the family are just paper candidateds to make sure that there is an election.
    Are they? Fare enough if they are but why cant we run with candidates who want to win and take this council over

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