Nobody should need to be told that Clarkson is a huge supporter of the Conservative Party, and is believed to be a friend of David Cameron, who is a neighbour of his in Chipping Norton. Yes, Clarkson is one of the famous ‘Chipping Norton set’.
The tweet reads: “I’m thinking I might stand in the next election as an independent for Doncaster North, which is where I’m from. Thoughts?”
All right, Jeremy, since you ask.
You are known around the world as one of the “three idiots” on the BBC’s Top Gear, which has become a comedy show about petrolheads, rather than a serious motoring show (and extremely watchable as a result). Every week, there is a feature in which you, Hammond and Captain Slow are set tasks and every week you manage to screw everything up somehow with your dunderheaded ideas. Now, I know that it’s just a TV show, but this is the public perception. Why on earth would anyone vote for you, based on that evidence?
Having said that, you are also known as a supporter of the Conservative Party. Standing as an independent would not disguise this fact, so Tories in Doncaster North would be presented with a choice between supporting the Conservative candidate or supporting you – a high-profile Tory. The law of averages suggests some of them would vote for you, so that means you would split the right-wing vote and give Ed Miliband an even greater majority.
On balance, therefore, this left-wing blog tends to support your idea. Go for it.
Better still, why not follow John Prescott’s advice and stand in Chipping Norton, your current home? I believe the Parliamentary seat is Witney. If you split the right-wing vote there, it might give a left-wing candidate a reasonable chance of gaining the seat and giving your friends and neighbours a halfway-decent MP, for a change!