I agree there are some excellent innovations, and I welcome the relaxation of the rules in all but one area: I am not happy about the increased spending limits for candidates in regional selections like GLA and Euros. A limit of £1300 benefits incumbents and well off candidates to the detriment of those less able to fund themselves or raise money from affluent acquaintances. We know that this is more likely to adversely affect certain categories of candidates, notably those from poorer backgrounds, ethnic minorities and women. Higher spending limits are a step backwards. I know people argue that it enables candidates to demonstrate their fundraising skills, but wouldn't those skills best be deployed raising money for the party in the actual election rather than funding additional mailshots in the selection?
Agreed. £1,300 is out of the realms of a few friends putting £50 in and into the realms where either the candidate needs to be well-off or they need to have a wealthy backer. It makes sense for some spending to be allowed though because under the old rules it was legal for a wealthy person to go round a constituency in a cab on the meter to drop leaflets but not legal to pay for stamps, which was nuts!