TURNOUT is a key element of the Euro election battle against the BNP in the North West and Hope Not Hate should be applauded for its campaign to maximise anti-racist votes (M Star April 10).
If the BNP polls more than 10 per cent because of low turnout, it will become a certainty that Nick Griffin will represent the North West in the European Parliament.
No-one can dispute the fact that, if the BNP finishes as the fifth largest party in the North West, it makes the prospect of Griffin’s election far less likely.
That makes the race for fourth place in the North West one of the most crucial battles of this campaign.
For that reason the Green Party has welcomed the decision by Respect in this region to advocate a tactical anti-racist vote for the Greens to help keep Griffin out of Europe. The combined Green/Respect support of 6.8 per cent in 2004 was greater than the vote share achieved by the BNP.
It is disturbing that the BNP was able to gain 23 per cent in a North Manchester council by-election, even in an area with a target demographic for them, but this was only achieved with an intensive campaign effort.
For some perspective, it is worth remembering that, in the 2008 local elections, intensive campaigning saw the Greens gain 43 per cent in a Liverpool ward, 40 per cent in a Manchester ward and 30 per cent in a white working-class area of Widnes.
If the BNP gets the 7.5-9 per cent that many people are predicting, then relying only on the red, yellow and blue parties to come up with a combination of votes that will keep out the BNP is like throwing three dice and hoping for a double six.
Voting Green to keep the BNP in fifth place is going to be one of the best ways to keep the BNP out and the nature of the D’Hondt system means that a tactical vote for the Greens is going to be three times more valuable than a tactical vote for Labour.
Lead European Candidate
Green Party, North West Region
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