Tories in Gazette poll tampering claim

Contributed by editor on Jan 24, 2006 - 12:49 PM


The Gazette was contacted today by a reader asking: "Should the public not be made aware that the Conservative Party high command is seeking to tamper with independent surveys?"

We were told that the local Conservative office had sent out the following Email to drum up support for the local tories sitting on Shepway Council.

<FONT color=navy>Subject: Please Vote
Date: Sat, 21 Jan 2006 14:26:14

<FONT color=navy>A local news website, The Hawkinge Gazette, is currently running an opinion poll o­n its front page in which people can vote to say the current administration at Shepway should go.   

<FONT color=navy>We would like the Conservatives to stay in power and a strong vote o­n this website will help stop dissent.

<FONT color=navy>Please vote "No, give them another chance" today at <FONT color=navy>

<FONT color=navy>Thanks

<FONT color=navy>Bob Davidson

<FONT color=navy>The Conservative Party
4 West Cliff Gardens
CT20 1SP
Tel: 01303 253524
Fax: 01303 251061

We have spoken to the Conservative Party Agent Bob Davidson who confirmed that he had indeed sent out the Email.

Defending his actions he said: "We are not seeking to tamper with an opinion poll.

"It's just a democratic way of  campaigning as political parties would."