All 7 entries tagged General Election Stuff

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October 02, 2007

General Election this autumn

Writing about web page http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/7023122.stm

At risk of looking like Mystic Mogg, it appears that our illustrious leader has decided to capitalise on his favourable position in the polls seek a mandate from the electorate and call a general election this autumn (or at least he’s told the unions he’s going to). This is the first time since 1974 that a Parliament has not lasted at least four years and could set a constitutional precedent for a new PM calling an election if they take over mid-term (either that or muddy further what are already muddy waters). Although I have to say I can see why Brown is doing this given the position the Tories are in. Will the result be much different from last time I wonder.


May 10, 2005

My final general election entry

So, the election is finally over and after staying up until 5:30am on Thursday/Friday, the result didn't surprise me very much. However, some odd things did happen, such as the government successfully defending numbers 1 and 2 on their defence list, whilst losing number 80. All in all, our warped electoral system produced an okay but not great result for all three major parties. Here follows my analysis of each party's performance:

Labour

Did well to hold onto so many seats; given how many they had before, to lose less than 50 was a pretty good performance. However, they were helped by the vagaries of the electoral system and their share of the popular vote was not very good at all. There are now also a large number of Labour seats which will only take a tiny swing to fall next time around including Warwick and Leamington, home to James Plaskitt, a new Parliamentary Secretary in Blunkett's DWP. Blair has also, in spite of the faux humility brought about by the loss of a fair number of seats, appointed several controversial people as ministers, including the newly ennobled Lord Adonis at the DfES, arch-crony Lord Drayson at the MoD, and the careless, forgetful, and mendacious Beverly Hughes as Minister for Children (what the nation's children have done to deserve that remains unknown). The re-appointment of Blunkett is also unwise, especially as he has, among other things, been put in charge of the Child Support Agency.

Conservatives

A pretty poor performance really. In spite of the net gain of 33 seats, they should be doing far better after 8 years of an increasingly unpopular government, even under FPTP. They hardly moved on from the share of the popular vote they got in 2001 which is a truly awful performance for a party which has pretentions at being a government in waiting. Michael Howard has also managed to re-open splits in the party by running a divisive, negative campaign and then announcing his resignation for some time in the future and, much as I despise the Tory Party, they need to be united in order to defeat some of the more egregious policies the government seems to be cooking up for the next Parliament. The fact that the Tories are congratulating themselves on winning fewer seats than Michael Foot won in 1983 is an indication of just how far gone they are, and the chances are that the upcoming referendum on the EU constitution may well re-open the splits in the party between the Euro-sceptics and the last remaining enthusiasts in the party.

Liberal Democrats

Probably have the most to celebrate as they were the only main party to see a significant rise in their share of the vote and they had a net gain of 11 seats (although FPTP has shorn them of representation to a greater degree than anyone else). However, a lot of their votes seem to have come from former Labour supporters who may well not vote for them next time around as by then, Gordon Brown will probably be Prime Minister, and there will be a greater threat of a Tory government to scare people into voting Labour. Their result was hardly the breakthrough they're claiming though; they're still a long way behind the other two in terms of votes and seats, although if the seemingly large number of students who voted for them remain loyal, they may in future have a younger support base than the other two parties.


May 04, 2005

A merciful release

At last the general election campaign is over. It's been boring me to death for the past few weeks in spite of the fact that I'm a politics and news junkie. However, since the pre-campaign, I've had a little countdown clock in my internet browser (thanks to Firfox) which has been counting down the minutes until polling starts and we're all free from the hideous spectre of politicians grubbing in the gutter for the last few votes they can root out. I know that if we're to have a representative democracy, this election and the campaign are important, but if it bores a self-confessed politics junkie such as me, it's hardly going to mobilise the electorate to turn out and vote for the Red Tories, the Blue Tories, or the Yellow Tories in large numbers. Anyway, in another 7 hours and 21 minutes polling will start and it'll all be over.

April 26, 2005

Lib Dems in dozy twits shock.

I got a leaflet through the door today from the Lib Dem candidate in Coventry North-West. Now, this would be all very well were it not for the fact that I live in Coventry South. It doesn't bode well for the Lib Dems' candidates' abilities to represent their constituencies in the unlikely event of their election if they don't even know where those constituencies are.

April 21, 2005

Final list of General Election Candidates

Follow-up to General Election Candidates from Luke's blog

A while ago I put up a list of election candidates in the local constituencies. This is now the final list. For details of other constituencies, click here.

Outgoing MPs are marked with a '*'.

Coventry South:

William Brown, UK Independence Party
Jim Cunningham, Labour*
Vincent McKee, Liberal Democrat
Irene Rogers, Independent
James Rooney, Families First
Heather Wheeler, Conservative
Rob Windsor, Socialist Alternative

Rugby and Kenilworth:

Richard Allanach, Liberal Democrat
Brian Hadland, Independent
Andy King, Labour*
Lillian Phallikaropoulos, Independent
John Thurley, UK Independence Party
Jeremy Wright, Conservative

Warwick and Leamington:

Ian Davison, Green
Linda Forbes, Liberal Democrat
James Plaskitt, Labour*
Greville Warwick, UK Independence Party
Chris White, Conservative

If you want to find the voting records of outgoing MPs, there's a handy site here.


An antidote to Party propaganda

There seems to be a proliferation of posts at the moment extolling the virtues of one political party over the others, so here is my definitive guide to why you shouldn't vote for any of them. I'm trying to present a broad view which doesn't make my own prejudices too clear.

Labour:

  • The War with Iraq.
  • All the accompanying shenanigans re. intelligence, WMD, etc.
  • The despicable Prevention of Terrorism Act (2005) and the Anti-Terrorism, Crime, and Security Act (2001), which drew comparisons with Stalinist Russia from a Law Lord.
  • Top-up fees being introduced in spite of promises that they wouldn't be.
  • Smug, pious, sanctimonious wanker Tony Blair.
  • Alistair Campbell.
  • Hazel Blears.
  • PPP/PFI. Especially on the London Underground.
  • Lies, damned lies, and statistics.
  • Botched reform of House of Lords and office of Lord Chancellor.
  • The proliferation of 'special advisors' paid for by the tax-payer.
  • Dodgy dealings with postal votes.

Conservative:

  • Michael 'something of the night' Howard being an utter gobshite.
  • Lowest common denominator campaigning.
  • Gave way on the Prevention of Terrorism Act when they had the government by the balls.
  • Commercial rates on student loans.
  • Don't manage to be a credible opposition, let alone a credible government.
  • You can't trust them as far as you can throw them.
  • Supported Iraq war.
  • Memories of the Major administration.

Liberal Democrat:

  • Give opportunists a bad name.
  • 'These are my principles – if you don't like them, I have others.'
  • Oppose government actions right up until the government start carrying them out.
  • 'Chatshow Charlie' Kennedy who opposed the Prevention of Terrorism Bill so much that he and a number of his MPs didn't bother to turn up when they could have defeated the government.
  • Half-hearted opposition to the Iraq war.
  • Pretending that tuition fees have been abolished in Scotland.

April 07, 2005

General Election Candidates

Writing about web page http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/vote_2005/constituencies/default.stm

Here's a current list of people standing in the General Election in the general vicinity of the university. For updates or details of other constituencies, click on the link above.

Coventry South (campus on the eastern side of Gibbet Hill Road, Earlsdon, Tile Hill, etc.):

Jim Cunningham, Labour*
Vincent McKee, Liberal Democrat
Heather Wheeler, Conservative

Rugby and Kenilworth (fairly self-evident):

Richard Allanach, Liberal Democrat
Andy King, Labour*
Jeremy Wright, Conservative

Warwick and Leamington (Leam. and the Cryfield side of Gibbet Hill Road):

Ian Davison, Green
Linda Forbes, Liberal Democrat
James Plaskitt, Labour*
Chris White, Conservative

Incumbents are marked with a '*' and further candidates may emerge between now and April 19.


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