How to win a by-election…

Perhaps not surprisingly (if you live in the locale) the Scottish Liberal Democrats ousted Labour in the Dunfermline and West Fife by-election. The amount of by-election paraphernalia that came through my letter-box was astounding. Some nights we even got two deliveries from the same party. The paper-recyclers will do well this month.

How did the Lib Dem candidate Willie Rennie overturn a huge Labour majority in what had been a safe Labour seat?

Leaflet drops, and plenty of them. Make sure people don’t and can’t forget your name, that’s the message that came across. And because the general voting public like cartoons, Willie associated himself with Oor Wullie – sometimes 2-box sketches, other times 3-box. Dubious copyright issues appeared to be noted and brushed aside. The quality of the leaflets left a lot to be desired, some even looked as if they were the infamous “copy of a copy of a copy, etc.”…despite this, folks remembered his name and voted for him. I’m glad, because my mind often goes blank when presented with a list of names on a ballot paper…

It’s a sceptical thought, however it’s a tactic that was deployed and worked…it got him 12,391 votes.