Should we save General Election night?
Quite a few people have had their say on this Sunday Telegraph story saying that council workers intend to ‘disrupt’ the traditional all-night TV election results fest. I think it is worth pointing out that this story smacks of those evil, bad council workers wanting to spoil our fun but there is more than a fair point when;
A spokesman for North Lincolnshire council said the chief executive had recently met election staff to discuss the way ahead.
He said: “Elections are a long day and a long night for staff, and there is a case that the counters will be fresher and do a better job after a night’s sleep.
Also, it is worth noting that only a tiny % of councils are actually considering this so saying election night is massively under threat is a slight exaggeration. What is more, as Costigan Quist rightly points out other countries seem to survive the wait. I am not sure it will dilute interest as Don Foster says; in fact, since most people are not political devotees and will not stay up all night to watch the results roll in I think that having some announced in the day may well increase interest not dilute it.
Mark Pack lists a number of reasons to save election night many of which are not really valid at all. For example, the complaint that;
“Particularly in the internet age, speculation and wild gossip quickly fills a news vacuum,”
seems to presuppose the same won’t happen regardless of when the votes are tallied. It also has to be bourne in mind that this time around the General Election could well fall on a local election day as well so the logistical burden will be greater. I think that the drama and tension may well be increased by an extension of some counts into Friday day and am not convinced that it is the disaster that people are making it out to be.