Slapped in the face: Call me a drama queen, but a letter from my MP brought tears to my eyes. http://t.co/M4lquKzNpDI am always conscious of the human cost for defeated candidates of all parties. The reality is that most (though not all) lose, not because they have failed or have been a bad councillor, but because of the regional swing or the fact the other side had more resources or a better GOTV operation.
— Nigel Fletcher (@nigelfletcher) July 14, 2014
I am a bit of a political bruiser - but I wouldn't dream of producing a leaflet post election and sticking the boot into a councillor who has just lost his or her seat. That's not just poor politics - but just cheap and unnecessary behaviour.
As many a surprised Labour or LibDem councillor will confirm, I actually make a point of seeking them out privately after the declaration to check they are OK and to wish them well. Nor am I afraid to do so publicly - as below:
And even when we lose, I try to be fair
And even in our Thank You leaflets (delivered whether we win or lose) I insist on the inclusion of a brief message acknowledging the work of the opposition candidates and their supporters:
I really do believe that the overwhelming majority of people become local councillors because they want to do their best for their local community. Politics and elections can be brutal - sticking in the knife after defeat really isn't nice or necessary.