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Tuesday, 3 March 2015

False Accusations of Misconduct

I notice that Martin Francis is, perhaps unwisely, hosting a debate about the Brent Council local government election count in 2014 on his blog.  It seems to be entirely generated by a defeated Liberal Democrat election candidate who is seeking to imply some kind of misconduct on the part of the counting staff.

I was present throughout the count and I saw nothing out of the ordinary.  The dramatic collapse in the Liberal Democrat vote is not out of line with the results in other Boroughs.  If anyone has any evidence of wrong doing, they should have taken it to the police a long time ago.  They might also have considered the possibility of an election petition.  Since neither of these appear to have been done, I suspect that the complainant is simply having difficulty accepting defeat, rather like many Yessers in the Scottish Indyref.  Those complaints amounted to nothing and I don't think these will.

However, circulating baseless accusations has two deleterious effects.  Firstly, it damages the reputation of the people organising the Count for no good reason.  Secondly, it means that when genuine accusations of wrong doing come forward they are more likely to be dismissed without proper investigation. 

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