So it is all over; votes counted, ballot boxes put away until next time, arguments over the Christmas turkey hopefully averted.
Both locally and nationally, as you can imagine, I am immensely satisfied with the outcome. This is unsurprisingly our best ever result in the constituency/. Nearly 58% of the vote and a 8.6% swing from Labour to Conservatives exceeded my expectations by far. A majority of 8,596 is more than my three previous majorities added together!
No campaign is ever entirely pleasant, though this saw more bile thrown at me than ever before – rather counter-productively in my view! However, as I said in my acceptance speech, the politics of entitlement never play well, and it is never about what the voters can do for you as the candidate, but rather what you want to do as a candidate for your future constituents.
The focus now has to be on the future, not just ‘getting Brexit done’ but also fulfilling the pledges we made on policing, healthcare and the NHS. I also have my local ambitions to fulfil – tramway extensions, A585 completed, A&E rebuilt and so on. And maybe, just maybe, with the certainty that a working majority provides, we can start to tackle issues like long-term social care which have had to be put in the ‘too difficult’ box for too long, and which we urgently need answers on.
The coming years will feel very different. After 4 major votes in 4 years, we can settle down as a nation, and start to diminish the rancour, starting by fulfilling the most urgent promise of all. We know what we need to do to get it done – and this time, we have the numbers to do it!
Thank you again to all who supported me. As I also said in my acceptance speech, as I said on every other election night since 2010, I rededicate myself to all of my constituents, whether they voted for me, or didn’t.
For now, enjoy a politics-free Christmas and a joyful and optimistic New Year. Let 2020 be more than just the start of a new decade.
Paul Maynard MP
Conservative - Blackpool North & Cleveleys
07885 651 705