I have seen an extraordinary email from a Lib Dem Cambridge city councillor kicking off about the election process in May. Something sinister perhaps? No, sensible impartial decisions made by the responsible returning officer to count the votes the following morning rather than throughout the night.
I’d like to think that most people want to make sure elections are first of all fair and open as well as being delivered in an efficient and cost effective way. The County Council election which is being held on May 2 this year and votes counted the next day, will be no exception.
Which is why I am astonished to find that one Lib Dem City Councillor wants tax payers to stump up extra money so he and his colleagues can get the results of the County Council election in the early hours.
This petty petulance is what puts voters off from getting involved in local politics. It is an example of councillors putting themselves before the communities we serve.
Counting elections the next day is not something new, indeed the last two County Council counts were done the day after and so was the recent Police Commissioner count.
But it seems Councillor Colin Rosenstiel, someone who clearly believes the world should revolve around him, would rather tax payer’s money be diverted from looking after the old and vulnerable so votes can be counted while the majority of people are asleep.
I’m guessing most tax payers would prefer their hard earned money go on frontline services rather than be told at 2am if they have a new councillor. I’d like to think that news can wait until the next day.
I think this is a case of himself and his City Council colleagues forgetting that Cambridgeshire is mainly a rural County where it is much harder and expensive to have a late night count.
So in a nutshell I am told the count is happening the next day because its cheaper; it helps our rural areas; it means we can use the same people as worked on polling day; we can deal with postal votes and we have done it before. All very sensible.
But in an hysterical and inaccurate e-mail our Lib Dem Councillor makes wild claims that ballot boxes may go missing as if we live in a third world Country. I would hope he has more faith than that in his own City Council officers who will be looking after the boxes for Cambridge.
He goes onto claim the electorate would lose confidence in the electoral process. Really! I think voters are more likely to lose confidence if they see a councillor stamp his foot like a petulant child wanting his own way and not what is in the best interest of the people we serve.
If you are exasperated as I am with this kind of petty politics then please don’t be turned off on May 2. Please vote for the councillors who care about the things that really count not the ones that care about the day we count your vote.
He has form: