Now the Police & Crime Commissioner elections are over, we can all breathe a sigh of relief at the news that the independent candidate, Bill Longmore, beat the two party candidates to become the first (and hopefully last) West Mercia Police & Crime Commissioner.
Bill Longmore beat a Conservative Councillor from Hereford and former Labour MEP and director of the Birmingham, Coventry & Black Country City Region, Dr Simon Murphy. There is, of course, no such thing as the lesser of two evils when it comes to Labour and the Conservatives but the prospect of pro-regionalisation, pro-EU, anti-democracy Dr Simon Murphy in a position of power and spending taxpayers’ money again was particularly worrying.
These elections were a pointless waste of money and with turnouts lower than any election in history, it’s difficult to see the results as anything other than illegitimate. Elected Police & Crime Commissioners are unwanted and unnecessary, they will do nothing to improve accountability and the post should be abolished before another £100m is wasted in 4 or 5 years’ time.
As an amusing aside, the picture to the right is currently the Twitter profile picture of Dr Simon Murphy, the most overtly political of the three Police & Crime Commissioner candidates. Thankfully enough people took the Labour candidate’s advice to deprive him of a win.