This is going to be an election like no other in Jersey’s history. Electoral districts have been re-organised, Senators have gone, and there’s a sudden proliferation of political parties. In truth, no one know how this is all going to play out…
For myself, I have looked at all the political parties, and I cannot find a home in any of them. Each has something good to say, but no one party has all the answers. I believe that despite the growth of political parties there is still going to be a big role in the Assembly for strong, independent members. It is highly unlikely that any one party will have a majority of seats, and in this situation independent candidates will have considerable leverage to negotiate support for particular policies.
It’s also worth remembering that the States Assembly is different to many other parliaments. All members of the States have the ability to bring propositions, whether they’re in the government or not. Just as now, the ability to get a proposition through the Assembly will depend on persuading fellow members (and parties) to give their support. My TV career depended on my ability to build teams and forge consensus around a common goal. I’m a good team worker. I think these skills will be as relevant in the next States Assembly as they have always been – and at least as relevant as being a member of a political party.
Far more important than membership of a political party is that St Brelade’s deputies are strong, clear of thinking, ready to take difficult decisions, and focused on finding common sense solutions to the issues that matter for the parish and the island.
One other point weighs on my mind: as an independent I will be able to represent St Brelade without compromise – my first allegiance will be to the voters of this parish, not a party.