It is always when election results are marginal that the effort put in by your supporters has the greatest impact on the result. Never has this been more likely in the history of UKIP than it is today, and this is particularly true across Dorset. 2013 put us in the best position to make an impact on the coming elections by breaking through the glass ceiling of electoral credibility in winning so many first-past-the-post elections. UKIP can make real progress, not just in May’s European Parliamentary elections, but in local and by-elections, and continuing to build on that momentum to win our first Westminster seats in the General Election to achieve our ultimate goal: out of the EU to get our country back.
We are in a position where we can be pretty sure that many seats could be won – or lost – by literally a handful of votes. The more effort our ‘troops’ put in to help bolster our vote, the more likely our candidates chances are to be on the right side of the winning line. It is essential that voters locally appreciate that UKIP are serious contenders, and for that to happen we need to work the patch.
Nothing beats eyeball-to-eyeball contact with local voters as a campaign method. Many people around here have told us no one has canvassed either recently, or in many cases at all. The reaction varies, but is always polite, even from Lib/Lab/Con voters. Face-to-face contact with voters shows that we are serious.
However, the primary object of canvassing is to identify your supporters. This is the most basic and essential voter mobilisation strategy of any serious party political organisation. To cover Dorset effectively, we need more deliverers, more canvassers, and more who can help in other ways such as joining/donating or simply allowing us to display an election poster. To do this, all that is needed is as we identify someone who will be voting UKIP, we then simply ask for a little help to get the message across.
A small North Dorset team of us have been meeting up as a ‘Hit Squad’ every Thursday at 6pm to canvass an area, to identify supporters and asking them to help by delivering a small patch of say 100-150 local houses. Every session we have picked up an average of 2 or 3 new UKIP helpers. We now have most of Shaftesbury covered with over 20 new helpers, and having just started in Gillingham, have picked up 10 helpers in three days.
The more helpers we have across the county, the more fresh recruits we have been making. Once fully briefed, you can set to work in your local area. Full briefing/training as to what is involved will be provided, and you can either ‘shadow’ a local canvasser, until you see how easy it is and are confident to either join the team ‘leapfrog’-style, or are ready to canvass your area. To help please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or your local UKIP branch Chairman or PPC. You can make a difference.