I must confess, normally I've paid little attention to MEP elections. They've usually ended up happening at the same time as local elections and there's been almost no campaigning material specifically for them - I always got the impression that the main UK parties didn't try particularly hard with MEP elections. I've still voted of course, but that's not due to any effort on the part of the political parties.
This time, however, it's all different because of Brexit and has almost morphed into another Brexit referendum. All the parties have Opinions on Brexit (some may as well be single-policy parties!), and roughly summed up they are:
- If you want to be in, vote Lib Dems, Change UK, or Green.
- If you want to be out, vote The Brexit Party or UKIP.
- If you want to shake it all about, vote Labour or Conservative.
Anyway, on to the Party Political Broadcasts and snark! Since last time (a whole three weeks ago), the BBC have changed their website and it's no longer alphabetically sorted, because why do a useful thing when one can do an unhelpful thing? Sigh. Full-text search it is! Oh, and you can't filter the results to just available programmes because again that would be a Useful Thing and we can't have Useful Things.
The Conservatives get to go first because that's the order the results came in. A collection of totally unbiased talking heads try to justify the chaos by saying it's everyone else's fault for playing politics. Oh, and the Maybot turns up to point out how voting Tory is in the national interest.
Next up, Greens! They're trying to convince everyone that the MEP elections do matter, really, honestly. Look, we even outnumber the Lib Dems! And we're green!
Labour on the other hand have a new film trailer full of gratuitous slow-mo. Showing in cinemas 23rd May, only Labour can save you from Theresa May's deal! We're not sure how, but we'll think of something!
According to UKIP it's all so simple: we voted to leave, and therefore we must leave. And by "leave" we mean "rage quit". Now. Or else.
Now for the Lib Dems. This time they get sidetracked by the glory days of the coalition, before realising that it is indeed MEP election time. Only the Lib Dems can stop Brexit! Oh, and we'll improve the economy and stuff.
Plaid Cymru have dug through their toy chest to put their clip together. The conclusion: everything is Westminster's fault.
New party on the block, Change UK, want to shake up politics with change! Change all the parties! We'll even let you change your mind on Brexit! Bring it on, Brexit Party!
Finally it's the turn of the SNP's latest film, A Tale of Two Cities. Or Two Parliaments. Or something. We'll let you know once Westminster stops ignoring us.
I wrote that list at the top before watching those clips, but looking back on it... yeah, that about sums it up. Labour haven't a clue what they want, and the Tories appear to have a clue except they're merrily self-destructing. The Greens, bizarrely, have moved from being another joke party to actually making a serious effort now - compare the current clips with earlier instalments (such as the Race to Number 10 board game from 2017 or their boy band music video of 2015).