Who will get in, and which order will they do it?
All I'm going to do is suggest whom I see as the front runners - whom I would place (in alphabetic order) - together with their strengths and weaknesses.
Francis Le Gresley - he has the advantage of being the "new kid on the block", but is also seen by some as an establishment candidate, perhaps a tad too willing to please the Council of Ministers. Also the part of his manifesto on taxes, balances its ideas (capital gains, higher taxes for incomes over £100k) with the phrase "we must look into the feasibility", which suggests a degree of uncertainty in his own mind. Because he has no baggage may do rather well, and he has worked - albeit as a paid manager - for a charity, which suggests social concern. [Although a lot of people I spoke to were under the impression that when he said "he worked for a charity", he was doing so in an honorary capacity, which is not the case.]
Patrick Ryan - definitely the "thinking businessman" yet with a broad appeal, and a wide ranging manifesto. His past record has both constructive financial elements - the strategic reserve was his brainchild - and some social commitment - voted for exemptions for GST on food. He also managed to get his scrutiny panels to bring in changes, not produce verbose and often filed away reports. Perhaps he has not come over as forcefully as he should - there's a lot of light under his bushel - but certainly should do well. He also has a carefully thought out manifesto over a number of key issues, and some interesting ideas on States reform. He even had an answer prepared when Daniel Wimberley asked a question about Green issues at St Mary!
Geoff Southern - the JDA candidate of "the left". Whether his endorsement by the Union will get members out to support him (although they weren't asked when their union decided to sponsor him) remains to be seen; past support from Union chiefs didn't translate into support from Union Indians. He has justified standing in a letter saying that "Senators carry more weight", which sounds like a statement about obesity. In practice, as everyone knows, Senators don't really carry more weight - they still have one vote - except in their title, which sounds grander, and that they are open to all Islanders to call upon (although there is no reason why Deputies can't help anyone where there is need.) Voting for Geoff Southern is voting for someone already in the States, and will lead to another bi-election, and I suspect most people will see this as pretty pointless.
Stuart Syvret - he will get support for bringing a number of issues to light - which he still does - read the latest entry about the appalling treatment of Carolyn Labey - but may well have alienated a lot of people by his hyperbole - he doesn't believe in politeness, and bandies insults left right and centre. Also his move into self-imposed exile, which he says was necessary to avoid Data Protection problems locally while publishing abroad, has not had the explanation taken on board by lots of his former supporters. They tell me "he's lost it". So it will be interesting to see if blog and hustings performances can turn into votes, especially as the JEP certainly is gunning for him to lose (the recent editorial makes Rob Shipley's comments on balance look particularly suspect!). But fighting the election more or less on one issue may be detrimental.
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