It seems that the Tory factional splits between the Rainham brigade and the Rochester & Strood group continues at pace.
This story is so oft repeated that it is beginning to get tiresome; the dysfunctionality at the heart of the Conservative ‘machine’ in Medway is a real distraction to the management of our local authority and improving the quality of lives for residents. It is however symbolic of the factional rot which has corroded the party in power.
A cuckoo in the nest has allegedly revealed to the press that three candidates put their names forward for the mayoralty at the last meeting of the Tory Group.
This blog was aware of the official Rochester candidate Andrew Mackness (via twitter) but not aware of the other alleged interested parties within the party (so to speak); Raymond Maisey and Rainham heavyweight Vaughan Hewett.
It allegedly appears that the vote was highly acrimonious and bitter with both sides using it as a proxy for the upcoming fight between candidates for the Police Commissioner ballot.
According to the Press sources, the Rainham outcome was the only realistic game in town and that the Rochester 'mob' had gone about managing the process in an undignified way. Many also cited the fact that as the Mayor was held by Rochester this year (Cllr Baker) that it should now be held by a Rainham Councillor now.
The ballot has been dubbed ‘the one that got away’ by parties within the party; because on the second ballot a 'loyal supporter' of the Rochester candidate swapped sides. As yet no one knows who was the turncoat but whispers are aplenty on whom may gain in the next round of selections for O&S. It is clear that Cuxton & Halling is a bit of an outrider in the Rochester & Strood Tory Party as the votes transferred to the Rainham candidate; very odd.
The winning candidate for mayor is Rainham Councillor Vaughan Hewett.
Interestingly, Andrew Mackness tweeted the following:
Was he watching the Godfather?
Of course none of this would be happening had the Tories not politicized the mayoralty in their last term of office. Don't say you were'nt warned...
I of course wish the winning candidate all the best… they will need it with less then half the support of the group on the first ballot.