Reflecting on the disappointing local election results, it appears that apathy, confusion or both have won the day along with the Conservatives.
Using Lincolnshire as an example, 68.02 per cent of registered voters did not make the effort to vote; in other words, 375,974 eligible voters declined to use their right to make positive change to their local communities.
This figure is shocking and needs to be addressed. Historically, it is well known that the Conservatives (Tories) tend to succeed best when electoral turn out is low.
There are a number of reasons for poor turn out. It is possible that constituents were not registered to vote or that they were physically unable to do so. I urge all to register to vote and remind readers that the deadline to do so prior to the General Election is Monday, May 22.
A further reason for apparent voter apathy is the “election fatigue” or the misguided rationale that their vote will not affect the outcome. It is obvious from the graphic (above right), kindly provided by Lincolnshire County Council, that this fallacy could not be further from the truth.
Perhaps voters are unaware of the good works the council does or could do had budgets not been cut by 40 per cent since 2010 by the LibDem/Conservative and Conservative governments respectively. Perhaps they subscribe to the appalling self-serving attitude prevalent among many whereby they are only concerned with their own wellbeing. It’s also possible that they don’t think that anything will change regardless of the dominant political party.
It is also possible that the local community feel let down by all the political parties and it is an ill-advised vote of protest similar to that of many in the EU referendum.
It is important to note that whether or not we engage in politics, it affects every single aspect of our lives, though we may not be aware of it. We all have issues that need to be addressed and our voices will not be heard if we make the choice not to vote
Whatever the (lack of) motivation, it needs to be addressed and quickly before the crucial General Election on June 8. Do not let apathy win! I urge all readers to ensure that they are registered to vote, regardless of political persuasion, as our right to vote was hard won. I also suggest that we all apply for the postal vote to ensure our voices are heard in case we are unable to get to the polling station on election day.
Finally, I strongly suggest that you analyse all the pledges offered by the parties and reflect on recent promises made prior to the General Election 2015 and the EU referendum last year.