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Simon you have my vote.

Simon's answers were the best.

It really was quite pleasing to see Simon Mort come all the way down from Oxford to assist in the Royal Docks by-election in Newham recently.

That is impressive commitment

I quite liked the answers from Jeremy and Simon. I do think Sir Graham if you're reading this that you would be missing a trick by not using Conhome. Whilst not all its readers are Conservative Party members (some don't even have the best interests of the Conservative Party at heart)it does tend to reach the most active of active members,particularly some of the younger ones. I don't know what the stats are on Conservatives.com but I think it highly unlikely that they would be able to offer the same numbers or the level of engagement this website can.
Many here do not really know what the Party Board does.Says it all really.
PS Has twinning really worked? I've yet to see an example of it.

From the tone of the article there is obvious feeling that ConHome feel they should be the conduit for communication with the 'grassroots'. From experience I know that many, many of our members do not have access to the internet nor have any interest in the internet. There are also members who do use the internet and email but do not view ConHome, nor even know of its existence (strange as that sounds to all of us!). I am sure from one of your polls you can tell me otherwise but I believe this site is really only read by the likes of us political junkies - from across the political spectrum - and the media.

And do we really want reports of Board meetings and other possibly confidential information posted in this public domain? I think not! It's bad enought at times already, giving ammunition to our opponents.

Jeremy M is tuned in to what is required.

Speaking as a Candidate Simon Mort could at best be described as a posh version of Michael Foot which may explain why he didnt remain in charge of candidates for very long!

Jeremy and Simon seem to get it. Jeremy seems to have a bit more drive.

Regarding those wealthy Associations disgracefully hoarding cash in bank accounts. Sir Graham's statement about "a loan to the Centre" is of no use to their neighbours! He clearly has no desire to shake things up.

Maybe an Association should get an extra vote/place in the Convention for every £10,000 they pay (not loan) into CCHQ or to their neighbours each year? How about some capitalism?

At present no one is directing/persuading the wealthy Associations to hand over their cash. Why? Who selects Regional folk? The wealthy? So where is the incentive for action?

I am a 'grass roots' member, and I would agree completely with what CJ said @ 16.25. I am a paid-up contributor to this website, and yet when I attend meetings or functions in my area, I somtimes feel as if I am on another planet! As CJ says, a fair percentage of the people that I meet don't use the internet, and as yet I have NOT met one person who even knows what ConHome is!!

Perhaps as a result of having no awareness of a centre of lively political debate, I find that those same people seem to have a very basic knowledge of what is going on, which is not really up-to-date.

", many of our members do not have access to the internet nor have any interest in the internet."

I don't know who you know, but I suspect that what you say is true of many people of 50 or more years of age. Computers have made their way into many homes, but like the horse and Water, its not always used .

" find that those same people seem to have a very basic knowledge of what is going on, which is not really up-to-date."

Who should be blamed? I believe that the BBC and SKY are much of the problem in this respect. British television used to be a very good source of political and News information. These days our televised news seems almost to be a deliberate smoke screen presenting only a small fraction of the world news and engaging with the politicians in disinformation and cover up. The arrival on our T.V's in recent years of such channels as Al Jazeera, Russia today and Press TV have gone some way to highlighting the real lack of content of much of our National media. In the case of Russia today the news is a spun as ours, but even so they are shown a lot more of intrest. Sky seems to be a never ending tabloid front page. All headline no information. Is it any wonder so many people have no real idea what is going on?

"I sometimes feel as if I am on another planet! "

Yes you are in a real sense in a different set. The Internet is still very much in its infancy, it is yet to produce its first generation of mega-stars. It is for the time being still not a universal medium.

"and as yet I have NOT met one person who even knows what ConHome is!!"

Now in my world almost everyone is aware of Con home, but I am an old style nerd who grew up learning Cesil, and cut my teeth on George 3. This is like Latin both an advantage and a curse. How important Con-home is can be very hard to judge. I do however expect the power of the Internet to continue to increase, and as an established site Conhome is well placed to become an important pressure group in its own right.

Ross I think perhaps it is a question of habit - as one gets older it is more difficult to take on new ideas, and trying out new gadgets. I think quite a few older people are apprehensive about getting involved with something like the Web - as yet it is too alien!

I think it is changing, gradually, what with e-bay and shopping on-line; I think it is the concept of joining a community like ConHome which is more of a challenge for grass roots members. I wouldn't be surprised if they thought that they would be required to 'know' more than they do, or that they would not be able to keep up with younger contributers!

I think your right Patsy, many people are put off by IT having a seemingly difficult learning curve. As a result many are put off. Of course many of the people here will have picked up computer skills working in the modern office world. The younger world, by which I mean those under 25, are almost all computer literate. Politics tends to appeal to a slightly older age group. So I suspect that as the current younger generation grow up the Internet will become 2nd nature. At the grass roots party level the party is still relatively old in terms of average age. So for the time being the Internet is still not as important as the Paper and TV media. I imagine that the full impact of the Internet will not been seen for another 10-15 years, by which time like driving it will be almost universal.

Dang scruffy post...I was going to edit out the repeated "Many"s but hit post by accident. My bad as they say in the US.

This is tricky. We will seldom see the winner carrying out the job - but the consequences of how he perceives and performs the job will affect us for years to come.

Simon Mort is a one of the most authoritative and concise Chairman I have seen in corporate or political life.

There will be many cats in the proverbial bag and the ability to charm them while banging their heads together is essential. He is stroppy enough to do this well. He could be stroppier but hey ho, so could we all. He will know what I mean!

Jeremy also brings something to the table. Not least of all, entrepreneurial ability and political success and insight in the North. The only area where he confuses me is when he suggests we should "allow local candidates to fight their local seat if they have a long history of campaigning and the support of their Association even if they would not pass the rigorous central selection criteria demanded of those who we may one day expect to sit in government."

I understand and agree with the first part - but not the second.

First of all - that sounds like a two tier system to me - just a far less controversial version than the system created by the Priority List that he wants to scrap. Less controversial because it would be downwardly unfair rather than upwardly unfair. Secondly, we cannot afford paper candidates or paper seats. Anywhere. Every candidate MUST be rigorously assessed. A minimum level of quality and commitment must be guaranteed in every constituency so that every Conservative-minded voter in every patch - throughout the country - has a chance to vote for a good candidate.

And I think it both highly unusual and commendable that a "Sir former MP" would go back into some serious heavy lifting within the voluntary party.

I happily no longer have a vote. But I am very keen to see all of them continue to play significant roles within the party. We need depth at every level of the Party. And how good that this sort of selection is open to scrutiny through CH.

Jeremy again proves he is the man for the job.

I'm still running with Jeremy Middleton on this one. If I had a vote, he would get it.

Jeremy Middleton has my support and would get my vote if had one. It's Time For Change at the top.

Roger 0908.

what do you mean by change at the top?

I understand that Mr Middleton is not e-mailing (no communication at all) to those individuals he "thinks" he knows is supporting Bright or Mort!! just goes to show how he will operate if electd. DONT ELECT THIS GUY.

@Tobisn: Isn't that exactly what we do when we don't deliver to houses with opposition posters in the windows?

Very good point, Gina!

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