Tag Archives: romford

Do Tweets win seats? – Micro-blogging and politics

Politicos use Twitter to communicate with voters, activists and the media. It’s sociable and fashionable. It’s useful but it has its limits.

And if this was Twitter I’d stop there, for the paragraph above is a 140-character summary of the popular micro-blogging service and its emerging role in politics. Having the luxury of a whole chapter, rather than a couple of lines, I can expound a bit. But sometimes I relish Twitter’s brevity and the way it gives me both the discipline and the excuse not to write at length.

Twitter was to the 2010 General Election what blogging had been to the previous one: novel, topical, conversational, personal. Blogging, in long and short form, is good for quickly spreading campaign messages, news and rumours and it’s freely accessible for anyone with an internet connection.

When I first subscribed to the service a couple of years ago, few news outlets or political candidates were tweeting, although the three main parties were already using it to link to party information and election results.

Over the past year, Twitter has been increasingly taken up by MPs and councillors, bloggers and journalists, even government departments, but crucially by thousands of people who are none of the above, but want to converse with them on an equal footing.

The parties continue to tweet, but now candidates, MPs and party leaders themselves are using the medium, with varying degrees of skill.

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Police detain teenager for photographing Armed Forces Day parade

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Havering Council flirts with breaking election law

Until yesterday, Havering Council was telling residents that it would reject any rolling registration applications that were not made on the council’s own form – despite the fact that such rejections would be a breach of the law. In a bizarre twist, it also meant that Havering Council was telling people who had filled in an electoral registration form via the Electoral Commission’s heavily advertised website, AboutMyVote.co.uk, that those applications were invalid.

As one resident who used the Electoral  Commission’s site reported, he received a letter from the council saying,

We do not accept internet forms.

and warning that unless a second …

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Andrew Rosindell runs into a spot of bother with his posters

Conservative MP for Romford Andrew Rosindell has again raised doubts about his team’s tactics and ability to run a joined-up campaign.

In March, Left Foot Forward asked Did Rosindell deliver the leaflets he denies approving? – leaflets which included alarmist comments about immigration.

Now the Romford Recorder reports:

Romford’s Tory parliamentary candidate, and sitting MP, has been breaking the rules while canvassing for the May 6 election, says a political opponent.

Andrew Rosindell was accused of fly-posting in Havering-atte-Bower – pinning election posters and placards to trees on the highway without permission – and parking unauthorised with two wheels on the pavement while

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Conservative MP disowns leaflet in immigration row

From today’s Observer:

David Cameron’s Tories were accused last night of dog-whistle politics after the Conservative leader appeared on the front of flyers saying the floodgates had been opened to mass immigration. Critics say the flyers are alarmist and misleading because they imply limits could be imposed on entrants from EU countries such as Poland.

Last night, the party’s frontbench was forced to distance itself from the hard-hitting material, which was put out under the name of Cameron’s home affairs spokesman, Andrew Rosindell …

The Liberal Democrats’ home affairs spokesman, Chris Huhne, said: “These flyers play to people’s worst fears in an

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